Conflict with a Colleague
Occasionally, conflicts between URFA colleagues may arise in the workplace. When facing a conflict, URFA members are encouraged to contact URFA as soon as possible. By working actively to resolve conflicts when they occur, we can create a more positive work environment for everyone. A copy of URFA’s member-to-member conflict procedures is available online. The procedures provide URFA members with a process that:
- Protects their information and ensures confidentiality in the intake process;
- Provides separate representation and information gathering services;
- Provides all members with access to confidential advice and representation during any investigation or dispute resolution process;
- Provides members with access to a fair and impartial investigation that assesses the relative merits of the competing claims
The following are answers to some questions that URFA members may have when dealing with a conflict in the workplace that involves another URFA member.
I have a complaint regarding a conflict with another URFA colleague. What do I do?
If you are facing a conflict with another URFA member, please contact URFA as soon as possible. This will help to ensure a timely resolution that works in everyone’s best interest. URFA will immediately assign a staff representative or designate to represent the interests of the complainant under their collective agreement and to provide the appropriate support. The assigned representative will handle the complaint with complete confidentiality .
I have a conflict with another URFA colleague, but I’m not sure that I want to file a complaint
The best course of action is still to contact URFA. An URFA staff representative will be able to help you and recommend a proper course of action.
How can I ensure that my confidentiality is protected while a complaint is investigated?
All complaints are referred to the URFA Executive Director or designate who will ensure that appropriate steps are being taken to protect information and maintain confidentiality.
How does URFA ensure that the investigation into the complaint is fair?
All members have the right to the presumption of innocence while a complaint is being investigated and retain the rights granted under their collective agreement. The Faculty Association will not act to determine the guilt or innocence of the accused, but will act to ensure a fair and impartial investigation that assesses the relative merits of the competing claims. Any determinations will be made according to the provisions of our collective agreements and/or according to the applicable laws of the jurisdiction.
All complaints are immediately referred to the URFA Executive Director or designate who will be charged with ensuring that representatives are providing fair representation to the members involved.
What do I do if a complaint is made against me by another member?
As mentioned, all URFA members have the right to the presumption of innocence while a complaint is being investigated and retain the rights granted under their collective agreement. All URFA members also have the right to fair representation. URFA will also assign a different staff representative or designate for the member whom a complaint has been made against to ensure they are fairly represented throughout the entire process.
What happens during the investigation?
A Faculty Association representative or designate assigned by the Faculty Association to each party in the dispute will collect whatever information is necessary to provide appropriate assistance to and protect the interests of each of the respective parties. The Faculty Association representative will be available to provide support to the complainant and/or respondent in all interactions with the employer and colleague within the terms of applicable policy and provisions of their collective agreement.
How long will the investigation take, and how long will it take to reach a resolution?
Timelines vary depending on the type of conflict and resolution process, however, URFA will take whatever steps it can to compel the employer to deal with the member’s complaint in a timely manner, as well as to enforce the right of the membership to work in a safe and healthy environment.