RESPONDENT:Wisconsin Employment Relations Commission
LOCATION:Detroit Police Headquarters
DOCKET NO.: 75-185
DECIDED BY: Burger Court (1975-1981)
LOWER COURT: Wisconsin Supreme Court
CITATION: 427 US 132 (1976)
ARGUED: Mar 22, 1976
DECIDED: Jun 25, 1976
Gerry M. Miller – for petitioners
James C. Mallatt – for respondents
Norton J. Come – for N
Media for Lodge 76, International Association of Machinists & Aerospace Workers, AFL-CIO v. Wisconsin Employment Relations Commission
Audio Transcription for Opinion Announcement – June 25, 1976 in Lodge 76, International Association of Machinists & Aerospace Workers, AFL-CIO v. Wisconsin Employment Relations Commission
Warren E. Burger:
The Judgment and opinion of the Court in 75-185, Lodge 76 of the International Association of Machinists against the Wisconsin Employment Relations Committee would be announced by Mr. Justice Brennan.
William J. Brennan, Jr.:
This case is here from the Supreme Court of Wisconsin. During negotiations for renewal of an expired collective bargaining agreement, petitioner union and it’s members engaged and a concerted refusal to work overtime.
The employer filed an unfair labor practice charge with the National Labor Relations Board, but that charge was dismissed on the ground that the refusal to work overtime did not violate the National Labor Relation’s Act, and therefore, was not conduct cognizable by the Board.
At the same time, however, the employer had filed an unfair labor practice complaint with the respondent Wisconsin Employment Relations Commission and that commission held that the refusal to work overtime, while neither protected nor prohibited by the National Labor Relation’s Act, was nevertheless an unfair labor practice under state law and the commission, therefore, entered a cease and desist order against the union.
The Wisconsin Supreme Court affirmed.
We hold that the union’s concerted refusal to work overtime was peaceful conduct constituting activity free not only of National Labor Relations Board Regulation, but also free of state regulation.
Congress meant that self help economic activities, whether of employer or employee, were not to be regulable by States anymore then by the National Labor Relation’s Board.
The so called Briggs-Stratton case, Automobile Workers versus Wisconsin Board in 336 United States insofar as contrary is today overruled.
Mr. Justice Powell, joining the Court opinion, has filed a concurring opinion in Mr. Chief Justice has joined.
Mr. Justice Stevens filed a dissenting opinion in which Mr. Justice Stewart and Mr. Justice Rehnquist joined.
Warren E. Burger:
Thank you, Mr. Justice Brennan.