I'm new here, a relative of mine must appear at a grievance hearing and is scared to death. My relative has worked in sorting for almost 6 mos. at the Rockford, Illinois hub. He has made a few mistakes, but loves working there and is very dependable and loyal - never late, missed one night sick, for oral surgery which they knew about ahead of time. One night about a month ago, his Union Steward was off for the night. My relative mis - sorted 2 or 3 items. His supervisor immediately called him over, slammed down resignation papers and tried to get him to sign. My relative refused and went back to work. The next night, when his steward was back, they met with Human Resources, who gave him a one day suspension, or get fired. Then, the steward filed a grievance. Since then, he has done a couple more mis-sorts. My relative received a registered letter on Wednesday from the Teamsters. They have scheduled a grievance hearing in Chicago in two weeks. The Teamsters local 710 hall is 100 miles away and very expensive to get to (probably 1/2 a measly paycheck). The letter says he MUST appear or forfeit the grievance. He's been off for Thanksgiving, so he's had 5 days to "stew" over this and is very upset. I guess the question is, can he do this over the phone? If not, Will the Teamsters pay his transportation costs? Is his steward expected to come with him? My relative is young and has never driven in Chicago and is practically getting an ulcer over this. How does this work? He won't see his Union Steward until Monday night. Thanks!