Local 947, Boilermakers

Health, Hospitality & Service Workers

Steward's Rights


Employers sometimes assert that the only function of a steward at an investigatory interview is to observe the discussion; in other words, to be a silent witness. This is incorrect. The steward must be allowed to advise and assist the employee in presenting the facts. When the steward arrives at the meeting:

  • The supervisor or manager must inform the steward of the subject matter of the interview: in other words, the type of misconduct being investigated.
  • The steward must be allowed to have a private meeting with the employee before questioning begins.
  • The steward can speak during the interview, but cannot insist that the interview be ended.
  • The steward can object to a confusing question and can request that the question be clarified so that the employee understands what is being asked.
  • The steward can advise the employee not to answer questions that are abusive, misleading, badgering, or harassing.
  • When the questioning ends, the steward can provide information to justify the employee’s conduct.