Appeal from the Order of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review in case of In Re: Claim of Jeanine Milsop, No. B-164676.
Cynthia A. Sheehan, with her John A. Kopay, for petitioner.
William J. Kennedy, Assistant Attorney General, with him Richard Wagner, Assistant Attorney General, Chief Counsel, and Edward G. Biester, Jr., Attorney General, for respondent.
Judges Wilkinson, Jr., Blatt and DiSalle, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Blatt.
[ 45 Pa. Commw. Page 470]
Jeanine Milsop (claimant) appeals from a denial by the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review (Board) of unemployment compensation benefits under Section 402(b)(1) of the Unemployment Compensation Law (Law), Act of December 5, 1936, Second Ex. Sess. P.L. (1937) 2897, as amended, 43 P.S. § 802(b)(1). The Board held that she had voluntarily terminated her employment without reason of a necessitous and compelling nature.
The claimant was employed at the Bureau of Employment Security (Bureau) in Indiana, Pennsylvania, under a one-year CETA (Comprehensive Employment Training Act) grant. With two weeks remaining on her CETA contract she was referred by the Bureau for a job interview to the Pennsylvania Electric Company (employer), which hired her to fill a clerical position and told her to report for work on May 23, 1978. When she arrived for work she was informed that as part of her duties she would be expected to operate the office telephone switchboard, and she worked on the assignment for one day. On May 24, 1978, however, she requested another assignment because she felt that working on the switchboard was making her nervous, and, when she was told that all of the clerical workers in the office were to rotate assignments and that she would occasionally be required to operate the switchboard, she terminated her employment. After adverse decisions on her application for benefits by the Bureau, a referee and the Board, she brings this appeal.
Section 402(b)(1) of the Law provides in pertinent part:
[ 45 Pa. Commw. Page 471]
An employe shall be ineligible for compensation for any week --
(b)(1) In which his unemployment is due to voluntarily leaving work without cause of a necessitous and compelling nature. . . . And provided further . . . that in determining whether or not an employe has left his work voluntarily without cause of a necessitous and compelling nature, the department shall give consideration to the same factors, insofar as they are applicable, provided, with respect to the determination of suitable work under section four (t). . . .
"Suitable Work" is defined in Section 4(t) of the Law, 43 P.S. § 753(t) as follows:
'Suitable Work' means all work which the employe is capable of performing. In determining whether or not any work is suitable for an individual, the department shall consider the degree of risk involved to his health, safety and morals, his physical fitness, prior training and experience, and distance of the available work from his residence. The department shall also consider among other factors the length of time he has been unemployed and the reasons therefor, the prospect of obtaining local work in his customary occupation, his previous earnings, the prevailing condition of the labor market generally and particularly in his usual trade or occupation, prevailing wage rates in his usual trade or occupation, and the permanency of his residence. However, notwithstanding any ...