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Alternate Ways to Resolve a Complaint


FEDERAL CIVILIAN PERSONNEL who wish to express concern about an issue or gather information regarding an established process may want to contact:

His/Her immediate or 2nd level supervisor
Commanding Officer
Local Human Resource Office
Human Resource Service Center

Employee Relations.   

Practitioners in the employee relations field provide advice and guidance to supervisors on how to address poor performance and employee misconduct.  In such instances, a complex host of requirements concerning performance and misconduct govern matters such as progressive discipline ad procedural due process, and these requirements must be considered in effecting disciplinary actions.  The most severe of these actions, such as suspensions of more than 14 days, demotions, and removals, are often referred to as "adverse actions."

Civilian Employee Assistance Program (CEAP)

A program mandated by Federal Regulations to provide short term non-medical problem solving to civilian employees on personal issues that may be affecting their employment.  It is a vital component of the Drug Free Workplace Program, emergency preparedness, civilian post deployment, and management support.  In the Department of the Navy, CEAP services are de-centralized with each major Echelon 2 command responsible for providing these services to their civilian employees.  To locate CEAP services for a particular major command, please contact the command servicing human resource office or the Director of Civilian Personnel Programs.

The U.S. Office of Special Counsel (OSC)

An independent federal investigative and prosecutorial agency.  OSC's basic authorities come from four federal statutes: the Civil Service Reform Act, the Whistleblower Protection Act, the Hatch Act, and the Uniformed Services Employment & Reemployment Act  (USERRA).  OSC's primary mission is to safeguard the merit system by protecting federal employees and applicants from prohibited personnel practices, especially reprisal for whistle blowing.

Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) - At the bottom of the page, you will see EEO.

The statutes enforced by the EEO Commission make it illegal to discriminate against employees or applicants for employment on the basis of face, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, or age.  A person who files a complaint or participates in an investigation of an EEO complaint, or who opposes an employment practice made illegal under any of the states enforced by EEO, is protected from retaliation.  Employees or applicants who believe they have been discriminated against by the DON have the right to file a complaint of discrimination.  Complainants have the option to withdraw the complaint during any stage of the process.

Alternate Dispute Resolution (ADR). 
Is an alternate method for resolving disputes and problems outside of the traditional process of grievances, EEO complaints, and litigation.  Mediation is the ADR process most commonly used by Navy and Marine Corps. 

Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB). 
The Board's mission is to protect Federal merit systems and the rights of individuals within those systems.  MSPB carries out it statutory responsibilities and authorities primarily by adjudicating individual employee appeals and by conducting merit system studies.  In additional, MSPB reviews the significant actions of the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) to assess the degree to which those actions may affect merit.

MILITARY PERSONNEL who wish to express concern about an issue or gather information regarding an established process may want to contact:

His/Her immediate or second level supervisor
Department Head
Commanding Officer (see "Commanding Officer Request Mast")

If you are unable to resolve the matter using the chain of command, you may consider filing a formal grievance.  These grievance procedures differ depending on your employment status.

Military members may consider filing one of the following grievances:  

Complaint of Wrongs Against the Commanding Officer - Navy Regulations Article 138
Any member of the Armed Forces who believes he/she has been wronged by his Commanding Officer must seek redress with the Commanding Officer personally.  The CO must act upon this request for redress in a timely manner (ordinarily within 30 days) and notify the complainant of the action taken.  If the CO denied you redress, submit a written complaint through the CO to the Secretary of the Navy via the General Court Martial Convening authority (the CO's immediate superior in the chain of command).  

Complaint of Wrongs Against a Superior, Navy Regulations Article 1150 
Any person in the naval service who considers him or herself wronged by an act, omission, decision or order of a person who is superior in rank or command may report the wrong to the proper authority for redress.     

Equal Opportunity (EO)
You may file a complaint of discrimination or sexual harassment, which includes a hostile work environment, using the command complaint resolution processes.  Military should seek assistance from their Command Managed Equal Opportunity (CMEO) representative.

If you are unable to resolve the matter using the chain of command, you may consider filing a formal grievance.   There are several ways for Federal Civilian Personnel to file formal complaints.

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