Appeal from the Order of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review in case of In Re: Claim of Kenneth D. Thompson, Sr., et al. No. B-111780.
Donald C. Winson, with him Eckert, Seamans, Cherin & Mellott, for appellant.
Sydney Reuben, Assistant Attorney General, for appellee.
Richard B. Sigmond, with him Bernard N. Katz and Meranze, Katz, Spear & Bielitsky, for intervenors.
President Judge Bowman and Judges Crumlish, Jr., Kramer, Wilkinson, Jr., Mencer, Rogers and Blatt. Opinion by Judge Crumlish, Jr. Judge Rogers concurs in the result only.
Before us is an appeal from a decision and order of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review dated January 5, 1972 affirming a Referee's decision which granted unemployment benefits to the claimants.
In a letter to the Aluminum Company of America (Alcoa) dated March 31, 1970, Local 445 of the Aluminum Workers International Union, Lebanon Plant (Union), requested five days of discussion between the Union and Alcoa regarding a workload grievance which had arisen on October 11, 1968. This procedure was provided in the collective bargaining agreement between Alcoa and the Union which permits the Union to strike over non-arbitrable grievances following the unsuccessful conclusion of mandatory five days of discussion of the present disputed issue. This comes after the fourth step of the grievance procedure. The five-day
period of discussion on a non-arbitrable grievance or a strike as a result thereof may be called at any time.
These five days of discussions between Alcoa and the Union started May 4 and ended May 8. On June 3, 1970, the Union called a work stoppage at the Lebanon Plant. The failure to resolve the workload grievance raised by its "5-day" letter of March 31 was given as the reason for the stoppage.
After one week, the Union notified Alcoa by telegram dated June 10, 1970, that it was accepting the Company's position on the workload grievance and that it was terminating the work stoppage. Alcoa refused to reopen the plant until the Union and Company resolved what Alcoa contended was the real reason for the June 3rd strike, namely the issue of staggered work schedules.
On August 20 and 21, 1970, Alcoa and the Union met and discussed staggered work schedules. These discussions resulted in an executed Memorandum of Understanding between Alcoa and the Union, dated August 21, 1970, which resolved the staggered work schedule issue.*fn1 This Memorandum was ratified by the ...