The dominating question which this litigation brings here for the first time is whether an employer subject to the National Labor Relations Act may refuse to hire employees solely because of their affiliations with a labor union. Subsidiary questions grow out of this central issue relating to the means open to the Board to "effectuate the policies of this Act," if it finds such discrimination in hiring an "unfair labor practice." Other questions touching the remedial powers of the Board are also involved. We granted a petition by the Phelps Dodge Corporation and a cross-petition by the Board, 312 U.S. 669, to review a decision by the Circuit Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, 113 F.2d 202, which enforced the order of the Board, 19 N.L.R.B. 547, with modifications. The main issue is intrinsically important and has stirred a conflict of decisions. Labor Board v. Waumbec Mills, 114 F.2d 226.
The source of the controversy was a strike, begun on June 10, 1935, by the International Union of Mine, Mill and Smelter Workers at Phelps Dodge's Copper Queen Mine, Bisbee, Arizona. Picketing of the mine continued until August 24, 1935, when the strike terminated. During the strike, the National Labor Relations Act came into force. Act of July 5, 1935, 49 Stat. 449, 29 U.S.C. § 151 et seq. The basis of the Board's conclusion that the Corporation had committed unfair labor practices in violation of § 8 (3) of the Act was a finding, not challenged here, that a number of men had been refused employment
First. The denial of jobs to men because of union affiliations is an old and familiar aspect of American industrial relations. Therefore, in determining whether such discrimination legally survives the National Labor Relations Act, the history which led to the Act and the aims which infuse it give direction to our inquiry. Congress explicitly disclosed its purposes in declaring the policy which underlies the Act. Its ultimate concern, as well as the source of its power, was "to eliminate the causes of certain substantial obstructions to the free flow of commerce." This vital national purpose was to be accomplished "by encouraging the practice and procedure of collective bargaining and by protecting the exercise by workers of full freedom of association." § 1. Only thus could workers ensure themselves economic standards consonant with national well-being. Protection of the workers' right to self-organization does not curtail the appropriate sphere of managerial freedom; it furthers the wholesome conduct of business enterprise. "The Act," this Court has said, "does not interfere with the normal exercise of the right of the employer to select
It is no longer disputed that workers cannot be dismissed from employment because of their union affiliations. Is the national interest in industrial peace less affected by discrimination against union activity when men are hired? The contrary is overwhelmingly attested by the long history of industrial conflicts, the diagnosis of their causes by official investigations, the conviction of public men, industrialists and scholars.
These are commonplaces in the history of American industrial relations. But precisely for that reason they must be kept in the forefront in ascertaining the meaning of a major enactment dealing with these relations. To be sure, in outlawing unfair labor practices Congress did not leave the matter at large. The practices condemned "are strictly limited to those enumerated in section 8," S. Rep. No. 573, 74th Cong., 1st Sess., p. 8. Section 8 (3) is the foundation of the Board's determination that in refusing employment to the two men because of their union affiliations Phelps Dodge violated the Act. And so we turn to its provisions that "It shall be an unfair labor practice for an employer . . . By discrimination in regard to hire or tenure of employment or any term or condition of employment to encourage or discourage membership in any labor organization."
Unlike mathematical symbols, the phrasing of such social legislation as this seldom attains more than approximate precision of definition. That is why all relevant aids are summoned to determine meaning. Of compelling
The natural construction which the text, the legislative setting and the function of the statute command, does not impose an obligation on the employer to favor union members in hiring employees. He is as free to hire as he is to
We have already recognized the power of Congress to deny an employer the freedom to discriminate in discharging. Labor Board v. Jones & Laughlin, 301 U.S. 1. So far as questions of constitutionality are concerned we need not enlarge on the statement of Judge Learned Hand in his opinion below that there is "no greater limitation in denying him [the employer] the power to discriminate in hiring, than in discharging." The course of decisions in this Court since Adair v. United States, 208 U.S. 161, and Coppage v. Kansas, 236 U.S. 1, have completely sapped those cases of their authority. Pennsylvania R. Co. v. Labor Board, 261 U.S. 72; Texas & N.O.R. Co. v. Railway Clerks, 281 U.S. 548; Virginian Ry. v. Federation, 300 U.S. 515; Labor Board v. Jones & Laughlin, supra.
Second. Since the refusal to hire Curtis and Daugherty solely because of their affiliation with the Union was an unfair labor practice under § 8 (3), the remedial authority of the Board under § 10 (c) became operative. Of course it could issue, as it did, an order "to cease and desist from such unfair labor practice" in the future. Did Congress also empower the Board to order the employer to undo the wrong by offering the men discriminated against the opportunity for employment which should not have been denied them?
Reinstatement is the conventional correction for discriminatory discharges. Experience having demonstrated that discrimination in hiring is twin to discrimination in firing, it would indeed be surprising if Congress gave a remedy for the one which it denied for the other. The powers of the Board as well as the restrictions upon
But, we are told, this is precisely the differentiation Congress has made. It has done so, the argument runs,
Third. We agree with the court below that the record warrants the Board's finding that the strikers were denied reemployment because of their union activities. Having held that the Board can neutralize such discrimination in the case of men seeking new employment, the Board certainly had this power in regard to the strikers. And so we need not consider whether the order concerning the strikers should stand, as the court below held it should, even though that against Curtis and Daugherty would fall.
Fourth. There remain for consideration the limitations upon the Board's power to undo the effects of discrimination. Specifically, we have the question of the Board's power to order employment in cases where the men discriminated against had obtained "substantially equivalent employment." The Board as a matter of fact found that no such employment had been obtained, but alternatively concluded that, in any event, the men should be offered employment. The court below, on the other hand, in harmony with three other circuits, Mooresville Cotton Mills v. Labor Board, 94 F.2d 61 (C.C.A. 4th); Labor Board v. Botany Worsted Mills,
The specific provisions of the Act out of which the proper conclusion is to be drawn should be before us. Section 10 (c), as we already know, authorizes the Board "to take such affirmative action, including reinstatement of employees with or without back pay, as will effectuate the policies of this Act." The relevant portions of § 2 (3) follow: "The term `employee' shall include any employee, and shall not be limited to the employees of a particular employer, unless the Act explicitly states otherwise, and shall include any individual whose work has ceased as a consequence of, or in connection with, any current labor dispute or because of any unfair labor practice, and who has not obtained any other regular and substantially equivalent employment."
Merely as a matter of textual reading these provisions in combination permit three possible constructions: (1) a curtailment of the powers of the Board to take affirmative action by reading into § 10 (c) the restrictive phrase of § 2 (3) regarding a worker "who has not obtained any other regular and substantially equivalent employment"; (2) a completely distributive reading of § 10 (c) and § 2 (3), whereby the factor of "regular and substantially equivalent employment" in no way limits the Board's usual power to require employment to be offered a worker who has lost employment because of discrimination; (3) an avoidance of this either-or reading
Denial of the Board's power to order opportunities of employment in this situation derives wholly from an infiltration of a portion of § 2 (3) into § 10 (c). The argument runs thus: § 10 (c) specifically refers to "reinstatement of employees"; the latter portion of § 2 (3) refers to an "employee" as a person "who has not obtained any other regular and substantially equivalent employment"; therefore, there can be no reinstatement of an employee who has obtained such employment. The syllogism is perfect. But this is a bit of verbal logic from which the meaning of things has evaporated. In the first place, we have seen that the Board's power to order an opportunity for employment does not derive from the phrase "including reinstatement of employees with or without back pay," and is not limited by it. Secondly, insofar as any argument is to be drawn from the reference to "employees" in § 10 (c), it must be noted that the reference is to "employees," unqualified and undifferentiated. To circumscribe the general class, "employees," we must find authority either in the policy of the Act or in some specific delimiting provision of it.
Not only is the Act devoid of a comprehensive definition of "employee" restrictive of § 10 (c) but the contrary is the fact. The problem of what workers were to be covered by legal remedies for assuring the right of self-organization was a familiar one when Congress formulated the Act. The policy which it expressed in defining "employee" both affirmatively and negatively, as it did in § 2 (3), had behind it important practical and judicial experience. "The term `employee'," the section reads, "shall include any employee, and shall not
The reference in § 2 (3) to workers who have "obtained regular and substantially equivalent employment" has a role consonant with some purposes of the Act but not one destructive of the broad definition of "employee" with which § 2 (3) begins. In determining whether an employer has refused to bargain collectively with the representatives of "his employees" in violation of § 8 (5) and § 9 (a) it is of course essential to determine who constitute "his employees." One aspect of this is covered by § 9 (b) which provides for determination of the appropriate bargaining unit. And once the unit is selected, the reference in § 2 (3) to workers who have obtained equivalent employment comes into operation in determining who shall be treated as employees within the unit.
To deny the Board power to neutralize discrimination merely because workers have obtained compensatory employment would confine the "policies of this Act" to the
Therefore, the mere fact that the victim of discrimination has obtained equivalent employment does not itself preclude the Board from undoing the discrimination and requiring employment. But neither does this remedy automatically flow from the Act itself when discrimination
The Act does not create rights for individuals which must be vindicated according to a rigid scheme of remedies. It entrusts to an expert agency the maintenance and promotion of industrial peace. According to the experience revealed by the Board's decisions, the effectuation of this important policy generally requires not only compensation for the loss of wages but also offers of employment to the victims of discrimination. Only thus can there be a restoration of the situation, as nearly as possible, to that which would have obtained but for the illegal discrimination. But even where a worker has not secured equivalent employment, the Board, under particular circumstances, may refuse to order his employment
From the beginning the Board has recognized that a worker who has obtained equivalent employment is in a different position from one who has lost his job as well as his wages through an employer's unfair labor practice. In early decisions, the Board did not order reinstatement of workers who had secured such equivalent employment. See Matter of Rabhor Co., Inc., 1 N.L.R.B. 470, 481; Matter of Jeffery-De Witt Insulator Co., 1 N.L.R.B. 618, 628. It apparently focussed on the absence of loss of wages in determining the applicable remedy. But other factors may well enter into the appropriateness of ordering the offending employer to offer employment to one illegally denied it. Reinstatement may be the effective assurance of the right of self-organization. Again, without such a remedy industrial peace might be endangered because workers would be resentful of their inability to return to jobs to which they may have been attached and from which they were wrongfully discharged. On the other hand, it may be, as was urged on behalf of the Board in Mooresville Cotton Mills v. Labor Board, 97 F.2d 959, 963, that, in making such an order for reinstatement the necessity for making room for the old employees by discharging new ones, as well as questions affecting the dislocation of the business, ought to be considered. All these and other factors outside our domain of experience may come into play. Their relevance is for the Board, not for us. In the exercise of its informed discretion the Board may find that effectuation of the Act's policies may or may not require reinstatement. We have no warrant for speculating on matters of fact the determination of
The only light we have on the Board's decision in this case is its statement that, if any of the workers discriminated against had obtained substantially equivalent employment, they should be offered employment "for the reasons set forth in" Matter of Eagle-Picher Mining & Smelting Co., 16 N.L.R.B. 727, 833. But in that case the Board merely concluded that § 2 (3) did not deny it the power to order reinstatement; it did not consider the appropriateness of its exercise. Thus the Board determined only the dry legal question of its power, which we sustain; it did not consider whether in employing that power the policies of the Act would be enforced. The court below found, and the Board has not challenged the finding, that the Board left the issue of equivalence of jobs at the Shattuck Denn Company in doubt, and remanded the order to the Board for further findings. Of course, if the Board finds that equivalent employment has not been obtained, it is within its province to require offers of reemployment in accordance with its general conclusion that a worker's loss in wages and in general working conditions must be made whole. Even if it should find that equivalent jobs were secured by the men who suffered from discrimination, it may order employment at Phelps Dodge if it finds that to do so would effectuate the policies of the Act. We believe that the procedure we have indicated will likewise effectuate the policies of the Act by making workable the system of restricted judicial review in relation to the wide discretionary authority which Congress has given the Board.
From the record of the present case we cannot really tell why the Board has ordered reinstatement of the strikers who obtained subsequent employment. The Board first found that the men had not obtained substantially
The administrative process will best be vindicated by clarity in its exercise. Since Congress has defined the authority of the Board and the procedure by which it must be asserted and has charged the federal courts with the duty of reviewing the Board's orders (§ 10 (e) and (f)), it will avoid needless litigation and make for effective and expeditious enforcement of the Board's order to require the Board to disclose the basis of its order. We do not intend to enter the province that belongs to the Board, nor do we do so. All we ask of the Board is to give clear indication that it has exercised the discretion with which Congress has empowered it. This is to affirm most emphatically the authority of the Board.
Fifth. As part of its remedial action against the unfair labor practices, the Board ordered that workers who had been denied employment be made whole for their loss of pay. In specific terms, the Board ordered payment to the men of a sum equal to what they normally would have earned from the date of the discrimination to the time of employment less their earnings during this period. The court below added a further deduction of amounts which the workers "failed without excuse to earn," and the Board here challenges this modification.
Making the workers whole for losses suffered on account of an unfair labor practice is part of the vindication of the public policy which the Board enforces.
But the advantages of a simple rule must be balanced against the importance of taking fair account, in a civilized legal system, of every socially desirable factor in the final judgment. The Board, we believe, overestimates administrative difficulties and underestimates its administrative resourcefulness. Here again we must avoid the rigidities of an either-or rule. The remedy of back pay, it must be remembered, is entrusted to the Board's discretion; it is not mechanically compelled by the Act. And in applying its authority over back pay orders, the Board has not used stereotyped formulas but has availed itself of the freedom given it by Congress to attain just results in diverse, complicated situations.
But though the employer should be allowed to go to proof on this issue, the Board's order should not have been modified by the court below. The matter should have been left to the Board for determination by it prior to formulating its order and should not be left for possible final settlement in contempt proceedings.
Sixth. Other minor objections to the Board's order were found without substance below. After careful consideration we agree with this disposition of these questions, and do not feel that further discussion is required.
The decree below should be modified in accordance with this opinion, remanding to the Board the two matters discussed under Fourth and Fifth herein, for the Board's determination of these issues.
MR. JUSTICE ROBERTS took no part in the consideration or disposition of the case.
MR. JUSTICE MURPHY:
While I fully approve the disposition of the first three issues in the opinion just announced, I cannot assent to the modification of that part of the Board's order
First. The Board is now directed to reconsider its order of reinstatement merely because, in the course of its recital, it stated that even if the employees in question had secured other substantially equivalent employment it would nevertheless order their reinstatement for the reasons set forth in Matter of Eagle-Picher Mining & Smelting Co., 16 N.L.R.B. 727.
Even if it be assumed that this recital imports an inaccurate appraisal of the Board's power, an assumption which I believe is without justification, modification of its order is not a necessary consequence. The question before us is whether the order the Board issued was within its power. There is no occasion now to determine what disposition should be made of an order which was not an exercise of the Board's administrative discretion, or to infer that the Board must investigate the substantial equivalency of other employment before it may order reinstatement. Suffice to say, the Board found that certain employees had been the objects of unfair labor practices and that it would effectuate the policies of the Act to order their reinstatement. It expressly rested its order upon those findings.
The circumstances occasioning the latter finding are convincing evidence that the Board not only was required to but did exercise discretion in the formulation of its order of reinstatement. Throughout the hearing the employer's counsel sought to show by cross-examining them that the complaining employees were not entitled to reinstatement. Shortly after that examination commenced, the trial examiner requested the Board's attorney to state the theory upon which he contended that those employees should be reinstated. Considerable testimony was offered to show the working conditions, hours, rates of pay, continuity of operation, etc., of mines in which the witnesses had secured other employment.
All this was in the record certified to the Board. Accompanying it was the contention of the employer that reinstatement should be denied for various reasons. The
That its order of reinstatement was more than a perfunctory exercise of power is pointedly manifest from the Board's own statements. Answering the employer's contention that reinstatement might foster discord among the employees, the Board declared: "We cannot but consider the difficulties of adjustment envisaged in the foregoing testimony [upon which the employer relied] as conjectural and insubstantial, especially in view of the lapse of time since the strike. However, even assuming that the asserted resentment of non-strikers towards strikers and picketers persists, the effectuation of the policies of the Act patently requires
In discussing its proposed order, the Board said: "Having found that the respondent has engaged in unfair labor practices, we will order it to cease and desist therefrom and to take certain affirmative action designed to effectuate the policies of the Act
And in its formal order, the Board stated: "Upon the basis of the above findings of fact and conclusions of law, and pursuant to Section 10 (c) of the National Labor Relations Act, the National Labor Relations Board hereby orders that the respondent, Phelps Dodge Corporation . . . shall: . . . 2. Take the following affirmative action which the Board finds will effectuate the policies of the Act:
The italicized phrases in these quotations were not chance or formal recitals. They expressed in summary a considered exercise of administrative discretion. The Board carefully followed the precise procedure which this Court says it should have adopted. It found that the employees in question had been the victims of unfair labor practices. It also found that the policies of the Act would be effectuated by ordering their reinstatement. Since there was evidence to support these findings, it is difficult to understand what more the Board should or could have done.
But if we are now to consider in the abstract whether the Board properly opined that it might have the power to order reinstatement without regard to the substantial equivalency of other employment, I am nevertheless unable to approve the modification of its order, or to accept the inference that the Board must consider the substantial equivalency of other employment before it may order reinstatement. There is nothing in § 10 (c) or in the Act
Practical administrative experience may convince the Board that the self-interest of the employee is a far better gauge of the substantial equivalency of his other employment than any extended factual inquiry of its own. Conversely, the Board may conclude that the policies of the Act are best effectuated by an investigation in every case into the nature of his other employment. That choice of rules is an exercise of discretion which Congress has entrusted to the Board. Whichever rule the Board adopts, it does not follow that reinstatement becomes a remedy which is granted automatically upon a finding of unfair labor practices. If for other reasons the Board finds that the policies of the Act will not be effectuated, of course it not only could but should decline to order an offer of reinstatement. Compare Matter of Thompson Cabinet Co., 11 N.L.R.B. 1106.
Second. As already indicated, I am unable to accept the limitation now imposed on the Board's power to make back pay awards. Again the question is simply this: Was the back pay order within the power of the Board and supported by evidence? What order the Board should have made or what rule of law it should have followed if some of the employees had "willfully incurred" losses are questions of importance which we should answer only when they are presented. They are not here now.
The Board expressly found that the policies of the Act would be effectuated by ordering the employer to make whole those employees who had been the victims of discriminatory practices. We are pointed to nothing which requires a different conclusion. We are not referred to
But again, if we are now to rule on the abstract issue, I cannot agree that the power to make back pay awards must be fettered in the manner described in the opinion just announced. For if the Board has no choice but to accept the limitation now imposed, its administrative discretion is curbed by the very decision which purports to leave it untouched.
It must be conceded that nothing in the Act requires such a limitation in so many words. To be sure, nothing in the Act requires a back pay award to be diminished by the amounts actually earned (compare Republic Steel Corp. v. Labor Board, 311 U.S. 7), but that should admonish us to hesitate before we introduce yet another modification which Congress has not seen fit to enact, especially when the two situations differ in many respects. It is not our function to read the Act as we think it should have been written, or to supplant a rule adopted by the Board with one which we believe is better. Our only office is to determine whether the rule chosen, tested in the light of statutory standards was within the permissible range of the Board's discretion.
The Board might properly conclude that the policies of the Act would best be effectuated by refusing to embark on the inquiry whether the employees had willfully incurred losses. Administrative difficulties engendered
This is not all. He must have capital sufficient to provide for himself and for any dependents while he awaits the back pay award, even though that may not come until several years later.
At his peril he must determine all these things because conventional common law concepts and doctrines of damages, applicable in suits to enforce purely private rights, are to be imported into the National Labor Relations Act.
Accordingly, I would affirm the order of the Board in full.
MR. JUSTICE BLACK and MR. JUSTICE DOUGLAS concur in this opinion.
MR. JUSTICE STONE:
With two rulings of the Court's opinion the CHIEF JUSTICE and I are unable to agree.
Congress has, we think, by the terms of the Act, excluded from the Board's power to reinstate wrongfully discharged employees, any authority to reinstate those who have "obtained any other regular and substantially equivalent employment." And we are not persuaded that Congress, by granting to the Board, by § 10 (c) of the Act, authority "to take such affirmative action, including reinstatement of employees with or without back pay, as will effectuate the policies of the Act," has also authorized it to order the employer to hire applicants for work who have never been in his employ or to compel him to give them "back pay" for any period whatever.
The authority of the Board to take affirmative action by way of reinstatement of employees is not to be read as conferring upon it power to take any measures, however drastic, which it conceives will effectuate the policies of the Act. We have held that the provision is remedial, not punitive, Consolidated Edison Co. v. Labor Board, 305 U.S. 197, 235, 236; see also Labor Board v. Pennsylvania Greyhound Lines, 303 U.S. 261, 267, 268,
While the stated policy of a statute is an important factor in interpreting its command, we cannot ignore the words of the command in ascertaining its policy. In enlarging the category of "employees" to include wrongfully discharged employees and at the same time excluding from it those who have obtained "other regular and substantially equivalent employment," the Congress adopted a policy which it may well have thought would further the cause of industrial peace quite as much as the enforced employment of discharged employees where there was no occasion to compensate them for the loss of their employment. It is the policy of the Act and not the Board's policy which is to be effectuated, and in the face of so explicit a restriction of the definition of discharged employees to those who have not procured equivalent employment, we can only conclude that Congress has adopted the policy of restricting the authorized "reinstatement of employees" to that class.
Even if we read the language of § 2 (3) distributively, it seems difficult to say that the specially granted power to reinstate employees extends to those who, by definition, are not employees, and this is the more so when the effect of the definition is consonant with what appears
As a majority of the Court is of opinion that the Board does possess the power to order reinstatement even though the discharged employees had obtained other equivalent employment, we agree that the case should now be remanded to the Board for a determination of the question whether reinstatement here would further the policies of the Act.
We agree that petitioner's refusal to hire two applicants for jobs, because of their union membership, was an unfair labor practice within the meaning of § 8 (3) of the Act, even though they had never been employees of the petitioner, and that under § 9 (c) the Board was authorized to order petitioner to cease and desist from the practice and to take appropriate proceedings under § 10 to enforce its order. But it is quite another matter to say that Congress has also authorized the Board to order the employer to hire applicants for work who have never been in his employ and to compel him to give them "back pay."
The Congressional debates and committee reports give no hint that, in enacting the National Labor Relations Act, Congress or any member of it thought it was giving the Board a remedial power which few courts had ever
Undoubtedly, the word "including" may preface an illustrative example of a general power already granted, Helvering v. Morgan's, Inc., 293 U.S. 121, 125, or it may serve to define that power or even enlarge it. Cf. Montello Salt Co. v. Utah, 221 U.S. 452, 462, et seq. Whether it is the one or another must be determined by the purpose of the Act, to be ascertained in the light of the context, the legislative history, and the subject matter to which the statute is to be applied.
In view of the traditional reluctance of courts to compel the performance of personal service contracts, it seems at least doubtful whether an authority to the Board to take affirmative action could, without more, fairly be construed as permitting it to take a kind of affirmative action which had very generally been thought to be beyond the power of courts. This is the more so because the Board's orders were by § 10 (c) made subject to review and modification of the courts without any specified restriction upon the exercise of that authority.
It is true that in Texas & N.O.R. Co. v. Railway Clerks, 281 U.S. 548, this Court had held that upon contempt proceedings for violation of a decree enjoining coercive measures by the employer against his union employees, a court could properly direct that the contempt be purged on condition that the employer restore the status quo. But Congress in enacting the National
Authority for so unprecedented an exercise of power is not lightly to be inferred. In view of the use of the phrase "including reinstatement of employees," as a definition and enlargement, as we think it is, of the authority of the Board to take affirmative action, we cannot infer from it a Congressional purpose to authorize the Board to order compulsory employment and wage payments not embraced in its terms.
Interchurch World Movement, Commission of Inquiry, Report on the Steel Strike of 1919 (1920) pp. 27, 209, 219; Bonnet, Employers' Associations in the United States (1922) pp. 80, 296, 550; Gulick, Labor Policy of the United States Steel Corporation (1924) pp. 125-27; Cummins, The Labor Problem in the United States (2d ed. 1935) p. 351; Bureau of Labor Investigation of Western Union and Postal Telegraph-Cable Companies (1909) S. Doc. No. 725, 60th Cong., 2d Sess., pp. 39-41; S. Rep. No. 46, Part 1, 75th Cong., 1st Sess., p. 8.
Even though a strike is caused by an unfair labor practice the Board does not award back pay during the period of the strike. Matter of Sunshine Hosiery Mills, 1 N.L.R.B. 664. Employees who are discriminatorily discharged are treated as strikers if during a strike they refuse an unconditional offer of reinstatement. Matter of Harter Corp., 8 N.L.R.B. 391. Originally back pay was ordered from the date of application for reinstatement, Matter of Sunshine Hosiery Mills, supra, but later orders have started back pay five days after application. Matter of Tiny Town Togs, Inc., 7 N.L.R.B. 54.
If there is unjustified delay in filing charges before the Board, a deduction is made for the period of the delay. Matter of Inland Lime & Stone Co., 8 N.L.R.B. 944. Similar action is taken when a case is reopened after having been closed or withdrawn. Matter of C.G. Conn, Ltd., 10 N.L.R.B. 498. And if the trial examiner rules in favor of the employer and the Board reverses the ruling, no back pay is ordered for the period when the examiner's ruling stood unreversed. Matter of E.R. Haffelfinger Co., 1 N.L.R.B. 760; and see the order in the present case.
The Board has refused to order any back pay where discriminatory discharges were made with honest belief that they were required by an invalid closed-shop contract. Matter of McKesson & Robbins, Inc., 19 N.L.R.B. 778.
If the business conditions would have caused the plant to be closed or personnel to be reduced, back pay is awarded only for the period which the worker would have worked in the absence of discrimination. Matter of Ray Nichols, Inc., 15 N.L.R.B. 846. At times fluctuations in personnel so complicate the situation that a formula has to be devised for the distribution of a lump sum among the workers who have been discriminated against. Matter of Eagle-Picher Mining & Smelting Co., 16 N.L.R.B. 727.
The rate of pay used in computing awards is generally that at the time of discrimination, but adjustments may be made for subsequent changes. Matter of Lone Star Bag & Bagging Co., 8 N.L.R.B. 244; cf. Matter of Acme Air Appliance Co., 10 N.L.R.B. 1385. Normal earnings in tips or bonuses have been taken into account. Matter of Club Troika, 2 N.L.R.B. 90; Matter of Central Truck Lines, 3 N.L.R.B. 317.
It is to be noted, of course, that in the Eagle-Picher case the Board's remarks were made in answer to the argument advanced here, that § 2 (3) narrows the application of the term "employees" in § 10 (c).
It is worth noting, too, that in that case the Board stated: "Further to effectuate the purposes and policies of the Act, and as a means of removing and avoiding the consequences of the respondents' unfair labor practices, we shall, in aid of our cease and desist order, order the respondents to take certain affirmative action, more particularly described below." 16 N.L.R.B. 727, 831.