Unemploymenet Compensation – Disqualification – Employee’s Refusal to Discuss Alleged Communist Party Membership with His Employer Constitutes Misconduct Connected With His Work

Claimant was discharged after he refused to explain or deny charges of Communist Party membership, made against him before a congressional committee, at a hearing conducted by his employer, a private contractor engaged in defense work. The Unemployment Compensation Board of Review rejected his claim for unemployment compensation benefits upon a finding that this refusal constituted “willful misconduct connected with his work.” On appeal, held, affirmed. An employee’s refusal to discuss alleged Communist Party membership with his employer, who is engaged in defense work, creates doubt as to his loyalty and jeopardizes his employer’s defense contracts. His consequent discharge is for “misconduct connected with his work,” which disqualifies him from receiving unemployment compensation benefits. Ault v. Unemployment Compensation Board of Review, (Pa. Super. 1958) 146 A. (2d) 729.