Robert V. Moser, Shamokin, for appellant.
William L. Hammond, Sp. Deputy Atty. Gen., Charles J. Margiotti, Atty. Gen., Roland M. Morgan, Associate Counsel, Harrisburg, for appellee.
Before Rhodes, P. J., and Hirt, Reno, Ross, Arnold and Gunther, JJ.
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This is an unemployment compensation case in which the bureau, the referee and the Unemployment
[ 169 Pa. Super. Page 471]
Compensation Board of Review disallowed compensation on the ground that the claimant voluntarily left his last employment without good cause within the meaning of Section 402(b) of the Unemployment Compensation Law, 43 P.S. § 802(b).
Claimant was last employed as a miner by the Susquehanna Collieries of the M. A. Hanna Company. In April, 1950, he was transferred by his employer to an operation known as the Maysville Slope. He was employed as a gangway miner at this colliery and was assisted in his work by a laborer, Joe Kramlick. The claimant and his 'buddy' had worked together for a period of approximately two years prior to this transfer. After working three days at the Maysville Slope, claimant and Joe Kramlick were notified that it was the intention of the company to separate them, each to work as a gangway miner, one cross-shifting the other. This plan necessitated the assignment of a new laborer to each and they were so informed by their employer. The evidence establishes that the employer desired to expedite the driving of the gangway and the proposal of the company to separate the two miners and give them each a laborer was in accordance with the usual procedure in the mines. Both the claimant and Joe Kramlick protested to the arrangement. Claimant also objected on the ground that he would rather quit than be separated from Joe Kramlick. Claimant, without waiting to see who would be assigned to him as a laborer, and without waiting to see whether he would be able to do the work as gangway miner under the new arrangement, quit his employment. The Board found as a fact: '4. Claimant abandoned his employment because he wanted to retain Joe Kramlick as a laborer and was not willing to continue working with another laborer.'
The evidence also establishes that claimant had the opportunity to continue his employment status had
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he been willing to perform gangway mining with the laborer to be assigned by the employer. Claimant, however, elected to quit his job rather than accept the assignment of a laborer in order to see whether the arrangement suggested by his employer would work out.
The issue for determination then becomes whether the reason advanced by the claimant for his failure to perform the work assigned to him under the conditions and arrangements offered by the employer constituted good cause within the meaning of Section 402(b) of the Unemployment Compensation Law. The burden was on the claimant to prove that he is entitled to benefits, Smith Unemployment Compensation Case, 167 Pa. Super. 242, 74 A.2d 523, and that he ...