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The article examines 78 arbitration decisions that weigh the employer’s right to discipline for absenteeism against the employee’s family care-giving responsibilities. It places such absences in demographic context; examines when lack of child care is treated as a legitimate excuse for absence, describes communication problems regarding work-family conflicts; assesses the assumption that employer responsiveness to …

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Arbitrator Knowlton posits that fairness requires the evolution of the concept of just cause to take into account the contemporary circumstances of workers, who increasingly lack a familial safety net.

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The predominance of single-parent and dual-worker households has greatly increased the tension that employees feel between responsibilities to their jobs and responsibilities to their families. Labor arbitrators most commonly encounter work/family conflict issues in discipline and discharge grievances. The authors conducted an experimental survey or arbitrators designed to explore (1) whether demographic characteristics of grievants …

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