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Scott v Budd Company 15.05

Section 29(8)

LABOR DISPUTE, Shutdown-start up operations, Lay off, Labor dispute in active progress

CITE AS: Scott v Budd Co, 380 Mich 29 (1978).

Appeal pending: No

Claimant: Clarence Scott, et al

Employer: The Budd Company

Docket No: B64 1637(1) 32860

SUPREME COURT HOLDING: ..."[I]ndividuals who become unemployed because of shutdown or start-up operations caused by a labor dispute in the establishment in which they are employed" are disqualified for unemployment benefits.

FACTS "On Wednesday, October 30, 1963, a number of employees in the foundry section of the brake drum manufacturing operation of the Budd Company ... walked off the job in protest of disciplinary action taken by management against two employees. As a result, production of castings was substantially curtailed. Through negotiations to settle the matter, start-up operations began in the foundry section on ... November 1, 1963. ... Because castings for some lines were not available from the foundry or from the bank, the company began laying off employees on those lines. Around 64 employees were laid off on November 4 and an additional 21 on November 5. The majority were recalled on November 11 and 12 and all were back at work by the 18th."

DECISION: The claimants are disqualified because of the labor dispute.

RATIONALE: Under Section 29(8) there are "three time intervals" relative to a disqualification: "(1) the time while a labor dispute is in active progress, (2) the time during which shutdown operations take place, and (3) the time during which start-up operations occur. These time periods may overlap in a given situation or each might be a separate segment of time. Each is a ground for disqualification if the requisite causal connection is established with a claimant's unemployment.

"[T]o adopt the construction ... that the shutdown and start-up clauses are operative only while the labor dispute is in active progress, would be to render those provisions without meaning in the statute because employees whose unemployment is due to a labor dispute then in active progress are disqualified by virtue of that fact. The court does not impart a nugatory meaning to words in a statute if the words are susceptible to being made effective."



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