On appeal from the Superior Court, Appellate Division, whose opinion is reported in 37 N.J. Super. 535.
For modification -- Chief Justice Vanderbilt, and Justices Heher, Oliphant, Wachenfeld, Jacobs and Brennan. Opposed -- None. The opinion of the court was delivered by Oliphant, J.
[21 NJ Page 432] The Board of Review of the Division of Unemployment Security, State Department of Labor, petitioned
for certification from a judgment of the Appellate Division, Superior Court, and we granted certification. R.R. 1:10-2(e). The Board of Review has the right to appeal an adverse judgment and the claimants not joining in the application for certification are parties to this appeal. N.J.S.A. 43:21-6(h).
The Board of Review had reversed the decisions of its Appeal Tribunal disallowing the claims for benefits under N.J.S.A. 43:21-5(b). It held that the claimants were eligible for benefits under this section, since the stoppage of work was not due to a labor dispute as defined by N.J.S.A. 43:21-5(d), and that a strike or walkout by a group of employees, whether sanctioned by their labor union or not, was not such misconduct as would disqualify the claimants from benefits under N.J.S.A. 43:21-5(b).
The Appellate Division reversed and held that the acts in question were such disqualifying misconduct and the applicants, McKenna, Kammerer, Lomuti and Colazzo disqualified for benefits and remanded the claim of Horne to the Board of Review for the purpose of taking further evidence.
All the facts are stated in the opinion of the Appellate Division, Board of Review, etc., v. Bogue Electric Co., 37 N.J. Super. 535 (App. Div. 1955), so we shall briefly state such salient facts necessary for our decision. On December 4, 1954 the employer, Bogue Electric Company, discharged one Green, an employee and shop steward for the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, Chauffeurs, Warehousemen and Helpers of America, Warehousemen and Helpers, Local 867. On December 6, 1954 a number of the employees walked off their jobs at 9:00 A.M. in protest against the discharge of Green, so that there was a cessation of work by a number of employees. The employer immediately removed from the racks the time cards of all persons absent from their posts and this action had the effect of preventing them from returning to work. The same evening they were all discharged by telegram.
N.J.S.A. 43:21-5(b) provides as follows:
"An individual shall be disqualified for benefits: * * *
(b) For the week in which he has been discharged for misconduct connected with his work, and for the five weeks which immediately follow such week (in addition to the waiting period), as determined in each case." (Italics supplied.)
The collective bargaining agreement governing the terms and conditions of employment by the employer of members of Local 867 ...