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Grievance directly to CO?

Chargersfan

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Quick question….can you send a grievance directly to the CO without the CoC? I see no reason why anyone would need to read this in the unit aside from the CO.
 
Not generally. A CO has staff and subordinate commanders (and their staff) that do the relevant staff/admin work on any file which is why admin usually flows through a CoC. A CO getting something directly is likely just going to ask their staff and the relevant CoC to do the staff work anyway so trying to go around the CoC is pointless
 
Quick question….can you send a grievance directly to the CO without the CoC? I see no reason why anyone would need to read this in the unit aside from the CO.
Not generally. A CO has staff and subordinate commanders (and their staff) that do the relevant staff/admin work on any file which is why admin usually flows through a CoC. A CO getting something directly is likely just going to ask their staff and the relevant CoC to do the staff work anyway so trying to go around the CoC is pointless

While both are foundationally correct, the Chain of Command is listed in DAOD 2017-1 as to who the Grievance is directed.

Your NOI to Grieve goes to the CoC, however, Section 4.2 states that does not preclude you from speaking direcrly to the CO about the matter. That can be as simple as an email saying what the issue is, so long as you can provide references, and that you intend to grieve it.

This should initiate dialogue with the CO and his Staff as to if they can and then how to fix the issue without it going to formal grievance. If they can, it should be dealt with in house. If not, you'll be assigned an Assisting Member to help navigate the process of submitting a formal grievance.

All this to say for all CAF Leaders: read up on DAOD 2017-1, take the "Assisting Member" course on DLN, and dont fuck your troops about on their administration.
 
In this particular case, the CO cannot do anything but pass it on to the grievance people to assign an IA. Also, I want to make sure HE gets it, and that there’s no lost in CoC nonsense.
 
In this particular case, the CO cannot do anything but pass it on to the grievance people to assign an IA. Also, I want to make sure HE gets it, and that there’s no lost in CoC nonsense.
Without knowing the full details, can't comment.

If it does have to go to IA, it will have to pass through the CO for comment and signature regardless of if it goes through the CoC or not. The timelines are stringent as well for them to respond.

I still think a quick chat with the CO first would :

a) prevent the perceived interference of the CoC, as you alluded to; and

b) not blindside the CO about a pretty heavy administrative process you're sending downrange.
 
While both are foundationally correct, the Chain of Command is listed in DAOD 2017-1 as to who the Grievance is directed.

Your NOI to Grieve goes to the CoC, however, Section 4.2 states that does not preclude you from speaking direcrly to the CO about the matter. That can be as simple as an email saying what the issue is, so long as you can provide references, and that you intend to grieve it.

This should initiate dialogue with the CO and his Staff as to if they can and then how to fix the issue without it going to formal grievance. If they can, it should be dealt with in house. If not, you'll be assigned an Assisting Member to help navigate the process of submitting a formal grievance.

All this to say for all CAF Leaders: read up on DAOD 2017-1, take the "Assisting Member" course on DLN, and dont fuck your troops about on their administration.

Absolutely great post. Having been the staff, the first thing the CO is going to do is say "hey give me some deets, so I can make an informed decision" regardless of how it is recieved. Especially if it's a grievance, that is going to leave the unit. So at the end of the day sure the member can email it directly to their CO but we also have chain of command that exists for a reason. In this case, since it's something that needs to leave the unit anyway an email to the CoC and cc the CO directly, or log it with the ICCM or email the CO directly. If you don't get an answer within the required timeline then push the issue. Lots of options.

*ugh fixed bad voice to text

In this particular case, the CO cannot do anything but pass it on to the grievance people to assign an IA. Also, I want to make sure HE gets it, and that there’s no lost in CoC nonsense.
Lodge the grievance through the ICCM. The unit will do the hey I can't be the IA letter and then it is gone. When I was in the staff position to do this I could care less whether it was lodged that way or if I had to put it into the system.
 
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Absolutely great post. Having been the staff, the first thing the CO is going to do is say "hey give me some deets, so I can make an informed decision" refreshed of how it is recieved. Especially if it's a grievance, that is going to leave the unit as the CO can't act as IA


Lodge the grievance through the ICCM. The unit will do the hey I can't be the IA letter and then it is gone. When I was in the staff position to do this I could care less whether it was lodged that way or if I had to put it into the system.

I called the 1-800 for the ICCM and they were like ‘yeah, grieve this…let me assign it to someone in your area…you shoukd here from someone in a week or so’.

That was 6 weeks ago.
 
Having been a unit Adjt for a major unit, I have some experience in staffing grievances.

I highly recommend that you read and understand DAOD 2017-1. This tells you the procedures that must be followed by the unit and you.

Ensure that the grievance is factual and not filled with emotion. The facts can get lost in the emotional verbiage and it makes it difficult for the reviewer to ascertain what is the problem, confirm the applicable regulations and resolve the issue.

Once the grievance is registered, make sure that you have the file number. As per DAOD 2017-1, the timelines are mentioned and you can call them to ask for a SITREP.

Once the grievance is staffed over to the IA, be patient. It may take months for the department to review, find the appropriate subject matter expert if necessary, study and resolve the case. Before I retired, my replacement came over from the Grievance Office and they were extremely short staffed with experienced Officers. Ten years ago, I submitted a grievance which was staffed over to the IA. It took 6 months before I received an answer. I had to periodically follow up asking for SITREPs.
 
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Having been a unit Adjt for a major unit, I have some experience in staffing grievances.

I highly recommend that you read and understand DAOD 2017-1. This tells you the procedures that must be followed by the unit and you.

Ensure that the grievance is factual and not filled with emotion. The facts can get lost in the emotional verbiage and it makes it difficult for the reviewer to ascertain what is the problem, confirm the applicable regulations and resolve the issue.

Once the grievance is registered, make sure that you have the file number. As per DAOD 2017-1, the timelines are mentioned and you can call them to ask for a SITREP.

Once the grievance is staffed over to the IA, be patient. It may takes months for the department to review, find the appropriate subject matter expert if necessary, study and resolve the case. Before I retired, my replacement came over from the Grievance Office and they were extremely short staffed with experienced Officers. Ten years ago, I submitted a grievance which was staffed over top the IA. It took 6 months before I received an answer. I had to periodically follow up asking for SITREPs.
six months! Must have been a simple one :) kidding...mostly

Great post
 
Actually it was a pretty simply case. For my efforts, I was reimbursed $2K for my moving expenses.
 
Call or walk into the nearest one to you? Conflict Solutions and Services: Contact us for help - Canada.ca

Grievances have fairly strict timelines (although easily overcome) so I wouldn't wait for some random org to reach out to you.
Disagree with the bit about how the timeline is easily overcome. I just sent 3 rejection letters to my IA this morning because the timeline was exceeded and it is not in the Interests of Justice for us to accept it.

Leblanc v. Attorney General of Canada, [2010] F.C. 785 and Hudon v. Attorney General of Canada, [2009] F.C. 1092 guide IA decisions in this regard.
The delay has to have been unforeseen, unexpected or beyond the grievor's control (QR&O 7.06). and even then, the grievance must still be submitted within a "reasonable period of time after the circumstances occurred" although "reasonable period of time" is not strictly defined thus your mileage may vary between IAs. For example, you were deployed on a short notice TAV after being aggrieved, likely accepted. You went on MATA/PATA after being aggrieved, likely not accepted

Also important to know that submission of a NOI does not extend the 3 month timeline to submit a grievance, however engaging ICCM within the 3 month period does extend it (ref: CDS Directive for CAF Grievance System Enhancement dated 3 March 2021, para 13.e)
 
Disagree with the bit about how the timeline is easily overcome. I just sent 3 rejection letters to my IA this morning because the timeline was exceeded and it is not in the Interests of Justice for us to accept it.

Leblanc v. Attorney General of Canada, [2010] F.C. 785 and Hudon v. Attorney General of Canada, [2009] F.C. 1092 guide IA decisions in this regard.
The delay has to have been unforeseen, unexpected or beyond the grievor's control (QR&O 7.06). and even then, the grievance must still be submitted within a "reasonable period of time after the circumstances occurred" although "reasonable period of time" is not strictly defined thus your mileage may vary between IAs. For example, you were deployed on a short notice TAV after being aggrieved, likely accepted. You went on MATA/PATA after being aggrieved, likely not accepted

Also important to know that submission of a NOI does not extend the 3 month timeline to submit a grievance, however engaging ICCM within the 3 month period does extend it (ref: CDS Directive for CAF Grievance System Enhancement dated 3 March 2021, para 13.e)
Easily may be strong of a word but the amount that are accepted past the 3 month period for a variety of reasons is still pretty decent. I am a few short years out of the game of managing grievance files but pretty much any file with decent reasoning (and timelines that matched) was accepted. The bosses I worked for and my own personal opinion was that if the delay was reasonable or there was doubt the benefit would always weigh on the side of the member. Stepping up and grieving is tough for most people as we have a traditional suck it up culture, so giving leeway where it makes sense is IMHO fine. I rather that than be on the wrong end of a Globe and Mail test.

Now some serial grievers take advantage of that but that is a cost I think we can all pay to ensure folks are taken care of.
 
Just for a point of reference, as a junior officer I wrote up a grievance. I passed it to my supervisor (a senior officer) who was next in my CoC. When he read it, he came up with a solution that satisfied me and solved the problem. No more grievance.

So sometimes just documenting things gets attention and solves problems. Regardless, if you do have a legitimate grievance, follow the procedures.
 
I will add an outsider's perspective.....

It would be interesting to know if I would have thought the same way as I do below 24 months ago before having been in a 200+ person accounting firm (bigger than most reserve units and probably as big as the actual strength of some Reg Force units nowadays) and, even as the lowest on the totem pole on Day 1, could have sent an Outlook invite to the CEO or any of the 15-20 Partners and had a meeting or coffee or lunch to talk about literally anything, no questions asked, no feathers ruffled, no pointless layers of supervisors to go through, etc.

Just for a point of reference, as a junior officer I wrote up a grievance. I passed it to my supervisor (a senior officer) who was next in my CoC. When he read it, he came up with a solution that satisfied me and solved the problem. No more grievance.

So sometimes just documenting things gets attention and solves problems. Regardless, if you do have a legitimate grievance, follow the procedures.

Unfortunately, the fear of unprofessionalism, retribution, privacy concerns, etc. in response to a grievance is not unfounded as some people in the CoC definitely get personal about these things and many (I dare say most) are very poor with keeping their yap shut, and it is tone deaf on the CAF's part to pretend otherwise. Being dogmatically tied to procedures that don't necessarily add any value is not helpful to the CAF's current predicament.

I don't know what rank he is at but if he needs to submit that thing through a section commander, platoon commander, company commander, before it gets to the CO, there's going to be about 10-15 different peoples eyes on it and there's no such thing as a secret between 10 people - the whole unit will probably know.

If I were the OP, I would request a meeting with the CO citing the regulation that allows for it and provide no other detail. With the written grievance in hand at the meeting, I would tell the CO I have a grievance that I want to provide directly to his Adjutant at the end of the meeting, as it is a private matter that I'd like to remain private, and since it's going to need to be referred outside the unit to an IA I would feel much more comfortable with as few eyes on it as possible before it goes to the IA.

The OP owes nobody an apology for feeling this way.

In the CAF's culture, this seems like a bold action which might ruffle some feathers for "skipping the chain of command," people might even start spinning out of control and asking why he wants to talk to the CO (he should tell them to mind their own business, in politer terms). They'll act like it is an affront to every person's integrity and character that someone might do that. I suggest that is exactly what is wrong with the CAF's culture, and speaks to the insecurity and weakness of it's leadership. If you are all sitting there thinking that what I suggest is awfully brazen or insubordinate, you should probably do some self-reflection.

If the CO has an issue with this, he/she is part of the problem. They can even show some leadership in culture change by telling whomever cares to be concerned, such as a nosey OC, RSM, or CSM, the CO can tell them "The member and I spoke privately. There's no foul play here and certainly no reason for anybody to be concerned that a member of the unit wants to speak privately to the CO about anything, as is allowed for in the DAODs. Perhaps we should self-reflect on why we are so concerned someone talking directly to the CO, this is not abnormal in other organizations and is something we can do better on. Let's get back to work."


Whether or not the OP has a good reason to feel this way is honestly irrelevant. Even if from the CoC's viewpoint there is no reason to fear a certain person in your Chain of Command, privacy concerns, etc., sometimes there are some idiots, unprofessional, incompetent, and/or toxic people, and unfortunately the only way for the subordinate to find out for sure is to run the gauntlet... it is not unreasonable to want to avoid that gauntlet and taking that chance particularly if those people can't even do anything other than read it and move it along.
 
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In the CAF's culture, this seems like a bold action which might ruffle some feathers for "skipping the chain of command," people might even start spinning out of control and asking why he wants to talk to the CO (he should tell them to mind their own business, in politer terms). They'll act like it is an affront every person's integrity and character that someone might do that. I suggest that is exactly what is wrong with the CAF's culture, and speaks to the insecurity and weakness of it's leadership. If you are all sitting there thinking that what I suggest is awfully brazen or insubordinate, you should probably do some self-reflection.

I don't understand this, if someone wants to go directly to the Chief or the CO and bypass myself and the rest of the chain, I'll happily support that request. One less thing for me to worry about and manage, let the CWO or CO handle admin matters, that's why they're paid the big bucks. There are still plenty of people who want to be the ones to say no, when in reality they are terrible trades people and leaders.
 
There are still plenty of people who want to be the ones to say no, when in reality they are terrible trades people and leaders.
I will disagree wholeheartedly with this sentiment, but I will say the problem is more than just wanting to be the one to say "no."

It's not wanting to be the one that is uninformed. We hammer into out leaders to "know your troops and promote their welfare" without providing the nuance that somethings are none of the leader's business.

The fear most subbies or Tp WOs have of the CO or OC or RSM/SSM finding out about an issue and it coming from top down has led to this. I honestly don't give a shit much about it, so long as the issue is resolved. If I don't need to know or don't have the authority/power to affect change for the member, I'm just another person in the loop that doesn't need to be there.
 
If I wanted to submit a Grievance, would I compile it by using a regular Military Memo format?
 
If I wanted to submit a Grievance, would I compile it by using a regular Military Memo format?
It it will go through the conflict resolution centre. Once you’ve elected to submit a grievance you’ll be assigned some one to assist you with it.
 
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