Even Where Employer's Request Seems Intrusive It Can Be Reasonable Under the Circumstances

In Semon v. Unemployment Compensation Board of Review, 53 Pa. Commw. 501, 417 A.2d 1343, 1346 (Pa. Cmwlth. 1980), the Court found the employer's request that the claimant obtain a psychiatric examination before returning to work was reasonable because the claimant's behavior at the workplace had been alarming, erratic and irrational. The Pennsylvania Supreme Court affirmed this Court's decision in Rebel v. Unemployment Compensation Board of Review, 555 Pa. 114, 723 A.2d 156 (1998), that a claimant's failure to submit to an employer's drug testing program constituted willful misconduct. The claimant characterized the program as a draconian intrusion upon his right to privacy, but we found that the employer's request was reasonable because the employer had a strong interest in maintaining a drug-free workplace. The claimant's failure to cooperate, therefore, was without good cause, and denial of unemployment benefits for willful misconduct was appropriate.