CDCR Meet & Confer Update
Title 15 regulations governing the Inmate Grievance process
Our Union team met with the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) on Tuesday May 10, 2022, regarding updates to Title 15 regulations governing the Inmate Grievance process. The Department is required to implement these updates by the Armstrong court decision, with the majority of the updated language relating to the process that the Department must follow for investigations into staff misconduct. Emergency regulations were implemented in January of this year, but the permanent regulations are still being drafted.
The updated regulations move the initial screening of an inmate grievance related to staff misconduct from the local hiring authorities to a newly formed Centralized Screening Team (CST) and the investigation to the Allegation Investigation Unit (AIU). These groups are under the authority of CDCR.
We were primarily concerned with understanding how these new regulations and processes would impact employees who may be subject to inmate complaints while performing their normal duties or following supervisor instructions. The updated regulations require that the Department investigate any allegation of staff misconduct where the inmate grievance has alleged that the actions taken were the result of discrimination, harassment, or retaliation.
This investigatory process is carried out by the AIU. If the investigation does not find staff misconduct, then no record of the inmate grievance is placed into the employee’s personnel file. Additionally, if the investigation finds that a mistake was made but was not due to discrimination, harassment, or retaliation, it will be addressed as a routine issue and not misconduct.
Our Team still has some concerns as to how this will be implemented by direct supervisors and local managers as the regulations put much of the process in the hands of the hiring authority. While our team is keeping a close eye on how this is implemented, we also can use your help. If you receive conflicting or confusing information from your local management about the updated regulations, please inform your Bargaining Unit Chair, Job Steward, or DLC president. Alternately you can contact our Member Resource Center (MRC) at 866.471.SEIU (7348) and, ask to get into contact with your Unit Chair to raise your concerns.