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PENNSYLVANIA LABOR RELATIONS BOARD v. SANSOM HOUSE ENTERPRISES (06/28/54)

June 28, 1954

PENNSYLVANIA LABOR RELATIONS BOARD, APPELLANT,
v.
SANSOM HOUSE ENTERPRISES, INC.



Appeal, No. 60, Jan. T., 1954, from order of Court of Common Pleas No. 6 of Philadelphia County, Sept. T., 1952, No. 1548, in case of Pennsylvania Labor Relations Board v. Sansom House Enterprises, Inc. Order affirmed. Proceedings upon petition of Pennsylvania Labor Relations Board for enforcement of its order against defendant employer, and upon petition of defendant for review of order of Board. Order entered reversing order of Board in part, opinion by FLOOD, J. Pennsylvania Labor Relations Board appealed.

COUNSEL

George L. Reed, Special Deputy Attorney General, with him Jesse Hyman, Counsel, M. Louise Rutherford, Deputy Attorney General and Frank F. Truscott, Attorney General, for appellant.

I. Herbert Rothenberg, with him Lemisch & Ginsburg, for appellee.

Before Stern, C.j., Stearne, Jones, Bell, Chidsey, Musmanno and Arnold, JJ.

Author: Chidsey

[ 378 Pa. Page 387]

OPINION BY MR. JUSTICE CHIDSEY

This is an appeal by Pennsylvania Labor Relations Board (hereinafter called "Board") from the final decree of the Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia County modifying an order entered by the Board against Sansom House Enterprises, Inc. (hereinafter called "Employer").

Following charges of unfair labor practices filed by local Joint Executive Board, Hotel and Restaurant Employees and Bartenders International Union, A.F. of L., the Board issued a complaint against Employer charging unfair labor practices within the meaning of Section 6, subsections 1(a) and (c) of the Pennsylvania Labor Relations Act (Act of June 1, 1937, P.L. 1168, as amended, 43 PS § 211.1 et seq.). Section 6(1)(a) provides that it shall be an unfair labor practice for an employer "To interfere with, restrain or coerce employes in the exercise of the rights guaranteed in this act.". Section 6(1)(c) makes it an unfair labor practice for an employer "By discrimination in regard to hire or tenure of employment, or any term or condition of employment to encourage or discourage membership in any labor organization: ...". Employer filed an answer denying the charges. Testimony was taken before the Examiner and thereafter the Board made a nisi order which in substance and material part directed the Employer (1) to cease and desist from interfering with, restraining and coercing

[ 378 Pa. Page 388]

    its employes; (2) to cease and desist from discriminating against its employes in regard to tenure of employment because of their known membership and activities on behalf of the Union; (3a) to offer (Mrs.) Mary Jane Greenwood, an employe, full reinstatement with back pay; (3b) upon request to offer full reinstatement without back pay to all employes who went out on or were affected by a strike instituted by the employes. There were also the customary directives to post a copy of the decision and order and furnish satisfactory evidence of compliance. Exceptions filed by the Employer were dismissed and the Board's nisi order adopted as its final order. A petition for rehearing was refused. The Employer then appealed to the Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia County, and the Board filed a petition for enforcement by the court of its final order. The Union was allowed to intervene.

There was a hearing in Court of Common Pleas No. 6 and Judge FLOOD, after an apparent close scrutiny of the record in a painstaking opinion found that the Employer did not know of Mrs. Greenwood's activities and that whether or not she was discharged for absenteeism or unbecoming conduct, there was no substantial evidence to show that she was discharged for union activities. In its original opinion the court below held that discrimination in her case had not been provided and the Board had no right to order her reinstatement. This raised the question whether the Board would have ordered the reinstatement of the employes who went out on strike subsequent to Mrs. Greenwood's discharge had it concluded that her discharge was not discriminatory. The court therefore sent the case back to the Board for report to ascertain its position with regard to employes who subsequently went on strike in view of the court's reversal of the finding by the Board that Mrs. Greenwood's discharge

[ 378 Pa. Page 389]

    was discriminatory. The Board held that it would have so found because the Employer had been guilty of an unfair labor practice amounting to interference and coercion under Section 6(1)(a) of the Pennsylvania Labor Relations Act, supra, 43 PS § 211.6. In its final opinion the court held that Lancaster Yellow Cab & Baggage, Inc. v. Pennsylvania Labor Relations Board, 371 Pa. 49, 88 A.2d 866, prohibited the entry of an order reinstating ...


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