A grievant was discharged with nineteen (19) years seniority for insubordination. Prior to the discharge, the grievant was suspended on five (5) separate occasions for incidences similar in nature. On the day of the incident, the grievant, employed in the capacity of boilermaker, was witnessed to be away from his assigned place of duty without permission. The grievant acknowledged this action stating that he went to the general labor building to lie down because of back discomfort. Approximately two years prior, the grievant had sustained a non-work related back injury to an extent to which he was off work for an approximate period of eight (8) months. After advising his foremen of the reasons for being away from his work area, the foremen directed the grievant to leave the site, go to the hospital, and not return to the plant. The grievant went to the hospital and was given treatment for approximately one (1) hour. The grievant returned to the plant after treatment but was refused admittance by his foremen and directed him to leave the plant. This directive was refused by the grievant. As a result, management contacted the local authorities in which the grievant was escorted to the local police station. The union argued that the penalty of discharge was hasty and too severe. The company was aware of the grievants’ prior back condition and notified management numerous times previously that he intended to lie down whenever his back hurt. The company maintained that the grievant failed to notify the foremen that he was suffering from physical discomfort. Additionally, the grievant refused to do what was recommended by medical professionals to alleviate his back discomfort. Finally, the grievant had numerous disciplinary problems prior for similar incidences and progressive discipline had been used in this case. The board determined that the discharge was taken on the basis of inadequate knowledge as to his medical condition. It would have been proper to place him on sick leave to undergo further examination. Award: split-grievant reinstated pending further medical examination from independent third party. No back pay awarded, but remedial payments awarded based on sick leave. USS-8102-H (Sylvester Garrett, 1/19/71) (Nature of grievance-discipline, discharge) (Reason for discharge- insubordination)

Case 1


Publication Date


Litgant 1

United States Steel Corporation

Subunit 1

Heavy Products Operations (Homestead Works)

Litgant 2

United Steelworkers of America

Local 1


Grievance 1


Grievance 1 Date


Grievance 1 Step




Contract 1

August 1, 1968 Basic Labor Agreement

Contract Provisions Involved

Section: 8(d) of Basic Labor Agreement


Arbitration, Discipline, Insubordination, Reasonable Accommodation, Step Discipline

Award 1

Sustained in part



Reinstated to previous position with restored seniority pending physical examination but without back-pay.

Upload File