Virginia Grievance Procedure
The Commonwealth of Virginia has established a dispute resolution policy and grievance procedure for qualified state employees, which is administered by the Virginia Department of Human Resource Management - Office of Employment Dispute Resolution. Certain probationary, non-classified and executive personnel may be exempt from the policy.
The primary stages of the grievance procedure include:
(i) Management Step Sesolution
(iii) Review and Appeals.
While any issue can be grieved for the purpose of participating in management step resolution, only certain adverse actions qualify for a formal grievance hearing. To initiate a grievance, Employees must file a formal written grievance within 30 calendar days of the employee’s knowledge of the event giving rise to the complaint.
The grievance form and filing details are provided by the Virginia DHRM's Division of Employment Dispute Resolution (“EDR”). In non-termination cases, a grievance typically can be initiated through your first level supervisor, though an expedited process is available for terminations, suspensions or when otherwise consented to by the parties. After filing the grievance, the complaint may proceed through a series of four “steps,” which culminate in a formal grievance hearing.
The second step of the resolution process is important, as it includes an informal conference for the purpose of gathering information relevant to the grievance. While these meetings are not adversarial in nature you may bring an attorney or other representative with you, though the attorney does not have the right to cross-examine witnesses at this stage. You also have the right to bring witnesses to the conference, though they cannot be compelled to participate.
In termination cases following a disciplinary termination or removal for unsatisfactory performance, a dismissal grievance can be initiated by filing a grievance directly with DHRM-EDR, which then proceeds directly to a Grievance Hearing.