Should dif­fer­ences arise between the Employ­er and the Union as to the mean­ing or appli­ca­tion of the pro­vi­sions of this Agree­ment, there shall be no sus­pen­sion of work or slow­down by employ­ees, nor any lock­out by the Employ­er, but an earnest effort shall be made to set­tle such dif­fer­ences prompt­ly by the fol­low­ing procedure:

Step 1.  The griev­ance shall be pre­sent­ed prompt­ly so that the facts can be read­i­ly obtained.  The time shall be estab­lished as with­in sev­en (7) work­ing days of the occur­rence that caused the griev­ance.  The griev­ance should first be sub­mit­ted to the imme­di­ate super­vi­sor of the grievant.

Step 2.  If the griev­ance is not sat­is­fac­to­ri­ly resolved pur­suant to Step 1, the griev­ance shall be reduced to writ­ing and sub­mit­ted to the Direc­tor with­in sev­en (7) days.  The Direc­tor shall meet with the griev­ant, and Union Rep­re­sen­ta­tive with­in sev­en (7) days of the receipt of the writ­ten griev­ance.  The Direc­tor will hear the griev­ance and secure any oth­er evi­dence he deems appro­pri­ate.  With­in sev­en (7) days of the meet­ing, he shall for­ward a writ­ten response to the griev­ant and Union regard­ing his findings.

Step 3.  If the griev­ance is not sat­is­fac­to­ri­ly resolved either par­ty shall noti­fy the oth­er in writ­ing of its intent to seek arbi­tra­tion with­in four­teen (14) days fol­low­ing receipt of the Step 2 writ­ten response from the Employer.

After sub­mit­ting noti­fi­ca­tion of an intent to arbi­trate to either par­ty, the Employ­er and/or the Union shall file a request to the Illi­nois Depart­ment of Labor to appoint an Arbi­tra­tor with­in sev­en (7) days.

The deci­sion of the Arbi­tra­tor shall be final and bind­ing on both par­ties.  Costs of arbi­tra­tion shall be borne equal­ly by the parties.