Facts: The employee, a union shop steward, was on her regularly scheduled day off at home. She was called by her supervisor and told to talk to three union members and instruct them to attend a work function called a â€œQuality Interaction Committeeâ€ meeting. The Quest for Quality program was a high priority with the employer for improving patient care at the facility and was part of a corporate program. The union had objected to the implementation of the Quest for Quality program and had taken a position that employees could attend the program if their jobs were threatened, but they should do so under protest and then file a grievance afterward. On the day in question, the union shop steward, in a three-way conversation with the three employees, told them that she would not order them to attend the Quest for Quality meeting, although she had been asked by her supervisor to instruct them to go to the meeting. The supervisor who had called the union shop steward had herself refused to order the employees to attend the meeting but relied on the union shop steward to issue the order to the employees. When the union shop steward failed to order the employees to attend the meeting, the employer suspended the union shop steward for two weeks. The steward grieved the two-week suspension. Now you be the arbitrator and based upon the facts and your reading thus far answer the following questions in essay format. First, summarize the case: â€¢ What would the employeeâ€™s (unionâ€™s) defense be? â€¢ What would the employerâ€™s defense be? Then, make your decision: â€¢ As the arbitrator, do you think the employer had just cause to discipline the employee? Why or why not? â€¢ If the unionâ€™s opposition to the â€œQuest for Qualityâ€ program encouraged the employees not to participate, should the union be held responsible for directing the employees to attend? Why or why not?
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