New Grievance Filing Procedures for POPA Bargaining Unit Employees


The October 2019 implementation of the President’s May 25, 2018 Executive Orders (EOs) has had a significant negative impact on federal unions’, including POPA’s, ability to continue to offer the broad scope of representation that we have provided for many years.


One area that has been significantly impacted is grievances. 


EO 13837, Section 4(v)(1) states:


“Employees may not use taxpayer-funded union time to prepare or pursue grievances (including arbitration of grievances) brought against an agency under procedures negotiated pursuant to section 7121 of title 5, United States Code, except where such use is otherwise authorized by law or regulation.”


Accordingly, POPA representatives are prohibited from using union time to prepare or pursue grievances on behalf of bargaining unit members.  Therefore, if an employee wishes to file and pursue a grievance, the employee must now do so pro se, i.e. via self-representation.


To file a pro se grievance:

 Copy the below notification, including the reason/issue for the grievance, and paste it into an email.  Send it to your direct supervisor, with a cc to David Dalke (Human Resources):


Dear Supervisor [last name],

Please accept this email as formal notice of my invocation of the negotiated grievance procedure regarding [the issue prompting the grievance].


The grievance has been directed to you in accordance with the Collective Bargaining Agreement. In the event that you do not have the authority to resolve the matter, please promptly refer the grievance to the official who does have such authority and notify me.



[your name]


Additional Information

Article 11, Section 6 of the Collective Bargaining Agreement details the grievance procedures and sets a 20 day deadline within which a grievance must be filed to be considered timely.   The 20 day timeframe is defined:

“Within 20 calendar days after receipt of an unfavorable administrative decision, or the date of the event or action prompting the grievance or the date the grievant becomes aware or should have become aware of such action.”


See, pages 27-34.



Employees should talk with Labor Relations regarding other time for the filing of a pro se grievance.

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