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Moore v. Georgia Department of Corrections

United States District Court, S.D. Georgia, Savannah Division

September 15, 2014

ELLA M. MOORE, Plaintiff,
v.
GEORGIA DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS, Defendant.

ORDER

B. AVANT EDENFIELD District Judge.

I. INTRODUCTION

Plaintiff Ella M. Moore brings this Title VII action against Defendant Georgia Department of Corrections ("GDOC") alleging gender discrimination and retaliation for filing complaints with the Georgia Commission on Equal Opportunity ("GCEO") and the U.S. Equal Opportunity Commission ("EEOC"). ECF No. 1 at 1. Moore also states that she is entitled to relief for intentional infliction of emotional distress under Georgia law, though she does not include this claim in her causes of action. Id. at 1, 7-8.

GDOC has moved for summary judgment on Moore's Title VII claims, arguing that there is no genuine issue as to any material fact raised in Plaintiff's Complaint and that it is entitled to judgment as a matter of law. ECF No. 13-1 at 1. Because the Court agrees with GDOC, it GRANTS GDOC's motion for summary judgment.

II. FACTS

Moore currently is a GDOC employee. ECF No. 1 at 1. Moore began her employment with GDOC in September 2000. ECF Nos. 1 at 3; 13-2 at 1. In 2006, she was transferred to Smith Transitional Center where she worked as a Correctional Officer until going on leave in May 2012. ECF Nos. 1 at 3; 13-2 at 2.

Moore began experiencing problems at work in May 2011. ECF No. 13-2 at 2. On May 24, 2011, Moore's supervisor, Assistant Superintendent Greg Steward, made a comment to an inmate to the effect of, "women should be barefoot, naked and in the kitchen, " while in Moore's presence. ECF Nos. 1 at 3; 13-2 at 3. Moore filed an administrative charge with GCEO/EEOC regarding this incident on June 28, 2011, alleging gender discrimination and retaliation. ECF Nos. 13-2 at 3; 13-10 ("Charge 93C"). On October 14, 2011, Moore filed a second administrative charge with GCEO/EEOC, this time for retaliation only, alleging that she had faced adverse treatment at work as a result of filing the earlier discrimination complaint. ECF Nos. 13-2 at 4; 13-15 ("Charge 9C"). Moore filed a third administrative charge with GCEO/EEOC on September 11, 2012, for disability discrimination and retaliation, alleging again that she was subject to retaliation for filing her prior complaints of gender discrimination. ECF Nos. 13-2 at 4; 13-18 ("Charge 102C").

Moore has been on medical leave from GDOC since May 21, 2012. ECF Nos. 1 at 6; 13-2 at 7.

III. STANDARD OF REVIEW

"The court shall grant summary judgment if the movant shows that there is no genuine dispute as to any material fact and the movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law." Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a). In ruling on summary judgment, the Court views the facts and inferences from the record in the light most favorable to the nonmoving party. See Matsushita Elec. Indus. Co. v. Zenith Radio Corp., 475 U.S. 574, 587 (1986); Reese v. Herbert, 527 F.3d 1253, 1271 (11th Cir. 2008). Courts, moreover, may consider all materials in the record, not just those cited by the parties. Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(c)(3).

The moving party "bears the initial responsibility of informing the district court of the basis for its motion, and identifying those portions of the pleadings, depositions, answers to interrogatories, and admissions on file, together with the affidavits, if any, which it believes demonstrate the absence of a genuine issue of material fact." Reese, 527 F.3d at 1268 (internal quotation marks omitted) (quoting Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 323 (1986)).

The nonmoving party then "may not rest upon the mere allegations or denials of [its] pleading[s], but... must set forth specific facts showing that there is a genuine issue for trial." Young v. City of Palm Bay, Fla., 358 F.3d 859, 860 (11th Cir. 2004). "A genuine issue of material fact exists if the evidence is such that a reasonable jury could return a verdict for the nonmoving party.'" Owen v. I.C. Sys., Inc., 629 F.3d 1263, 1270 (11th Cir. 2011) (quoting Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 248 (1986)). A fact is material only if it might affect the outcome of the suit under governing law. See Anderson, 477 U.S. at 248.

IV. ANALYSIS

GDOC has moved for summary judgment, arguing that: (1) the Court is procedurally barred from hearing Moore's claims predicated on Charge 93C and Charge 9C; and (2) GDOC is entitled to summary judgment on Moore's claims predicated on Charge 102C. ECF No. 13-1 at 7, 10.

A. Moore's Claims Predicated on Charge 93C Are Procedurally Deficient And The Court May Not Equitably Modify Title VII's Procedural Requirements Here

"Before instituting a Title VII action in federal district court, a private plaintiff must file an EEOC complaint against the discriminating party and receive statutory notice from the EEOC of his or her right to sue the respondent named in the charge." Forehand v. Fla. State Hosp. at Chattahoochee, 89 F.3d 1562, 1567 (11th Cir. 1996) (emphasis added). Here, although Moore filed an EEOC complaint for ...


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