A Formal meeting is a discussion or meeting between one or more
representatives of the agency and one or more employees in the bargaining
unit concerning any grievance or any personnel policy or practice or other
general condition of employment. The term “discussion” is synonymous with
“meeting” and no actual discussion or dialogue need occur for the meeting to
constitute a formal discussion.
- A meeting is considered formal if there is:
- Presence of a supervisor or management official and at least one
bargaining unit employee; and
- Discussion of a new or changed policy or working condition, or
- Discussion of a grievance or appeal; and
- Formality; such as required attendance, an agenda, use of a
conference room, scheduled times, etc.
- Prior to conducting this meeting, the management representative must
notify the union and give its designated representative a reasonable
opportunity to attend.
- If a union representative is part of the work group attending a
formal discussion, his/her presence at the meeting does not fulfill
management’s obligation to formally notify the union. The union must be
afforded the opportunity to send a representative of its choice.
- Since this right is granted to the union, an individual or group of
employees at the meeting may not waive it.
- The union’s role at a formal discussion is to actively represent the
entire bargaining unit. The union representative at the meeting may
speak and ask questions; however, this must be done in a professional
and non-disruptive manner.
- Typically, routine informational staff meetings held by first level
supervisors are NOT considered formal meetings. Additionally, counseling
sessions, the discussion of current work procedures and assignments, or
performance reviews are NOT formal meetings.