Wisconsin Labor and Industry Review Commission --
Summary of Wisconsin Court Decision relating to Unemployment Insurance
Subject: Lisa A. Washington (Hrg. No. 97603571MW) v. LIRC and Meritus Education
Resources, Case 97-CV-010214 (Wis. Cir. Ct., Milwaukee Co., May 15, 1998)
Digest Codes: MC 659
Employe was an aide at a day car center, responsible for a class of 4- and 5-year olds. She was fired after the employer concluded that she fell asleep at work. The Appeal Tribunal allowed, based on a finding that it had been proved that the employe fell asleep, but LIRC reversed, finding that she had fallen asleep, and that the risks presented by her thus leaving a group of young children unsupervised were so great that her falling asleep constituted misconduct. On appeal, the employe argued that the evidence was not adequate to establish that she was sleeping, and that in any event her falling asleep because she was feeling sick should not be considered misconduct.
Held: Affirmed. There was sufficient credible evidence in the record to support the finding that the employe was sleeping. The court gives great weight to the commission's determination, that sleeping while on a job which requires supervision of a classroom of 4-and 5-year olds was carelessness or negligence of such a degree as to constitute misconduct. The employe's argument, that falling asleep because of sickness should not be treated as misconduct, assumes a fact not found. The commission only found that the employe was sleeping, not that she was sick. In addition, the employe's argument was inconsistent with her assertion that she had not fallen asleep, but only had her head down.
Please note that this is a summary prepared by staff of the commission, not a verbatim reproduction of the court decision.
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