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Article Sixteen — Discharge and Discipline

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16.1 Warning Notices.

Registered Nurses shall be given a copy of all written disciplinary warning notices issued to them.

16.2 Union Representation at Disciplinary Interviews.

The Employer recognizes the reasonably exercised right of a Registered Nurse, upon request, to have a local union representative present at a disciplinary interview by management wherein a response by the Registered Nurse is required and wherein it is reasonably anticipated that disciplinary action will result to that Registered Nurse and such local representative is reasonably available, provided that this right does not extend to investigatory or fact finding interviews, consultations or counseling sessions even though some disciplinary action could result after or on the basis of such investigation, fact finding or consultation. An interview, etc., at which the right to have a local union representative is not afforded upon request shall not be considered, or included in the Employee's personnel file, as a disciplinary interview or other form of progressive discipline.

16.3 Discharge and Penalties.

The Employer shall have the right to discharge, suspend or otherwise discipline any Employee for cause. The Employer will notify the Union in writing of any discharge or suspension within forty-eight (48) hours (not including Saturdays, Sundays and holidays) from the time of such discharge. If the Union desires to contest the discharge, it shall give written notice thereof to the Employer within five (5) workdays, but not later than ten (10) workdays from the date of receipt of notice of discharge or suspension. In such event, the dispute shall be submitted and determined under the grievance and arbitration procedure set forth herein, however, commencing at Step 2 of the grievance procedure. If the Union notice of contest is given from six (6) to ten (10) workdays after receipt of the notice of discharge, the days beyond five (5) shall be deemed waived insofar as back pay is concerned. If the discharge results from conduct relating to a patient or other person who does not appear at the arbitration, the arbitrator shall not consider the failure of the individual to appear as prejudicial. All the time limits herein specified shall be deemed exclusive of Saturdays, Sundays and holidays.