Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Pennell v. Med

United States District Court, E.D. North Carolina, Western Division

October 4, 2019

DENISE PENNELL, Plaintiff,
v.
WAKE MED, Defendant.

          ORDER

          LOUISE W. FLANAGAN UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         This matter is before the court upon defendant's motion for judgment on the pleadings (DE 12) and plaintiff's motion to amend complaint (DE 20). The motions have been briefed fully and the issues raised are ripe for ruling. For the following reasons, defendant's motion is granted and plaintiff's motion is denied.

         STATEMENT OF THE CASE

         Plaintiff commenced this action in Wake County Superior Court, on November 30, 2018, asserting a claim against defendant, her former employer, for discriminatory discharge in violation of Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), 42 U.S.C. § 12112(a). Plaintiff seeks compensatory damages, reinstatement, back pay, front pay, lost benefits, attorney's fees, costs, and interest.

         Defendant removed to this court on January 8, 2019, and filed the instant motion for judgment on the pleadings on March 8, 2019. In support thereof, defendant relies upon plaintiff's charge of discrimination filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) (hereinafter, the “EEOC charge”). Plaintiff responded in opposition to defendant's motion on March 29, 2019, and she filed the instant motion to amend complaint on April 1, 2019, relying upon a proposed amended complaint and redline showing changes proposed. Defendant filed a combined response in opposition to the motion to amend and reply in support of its motion on May 13, 2019. Plaintiff replied in support of her motion to amend on May 28, 2019.

         STATEMENT OF ALLEGED FACTS

         The facts alleged in the complaint may be summarized as follows. Plaintiff began employment with defendant in 1988 as a staff nurse in defendant's operating rooms. In early 2017, plaintiff applied for a position in defendant's Patient and Family Experience (“PFE”) Department. (Compl. ¶ 9). Plaintiff was hired as a “PFE Specialist, ” and began working in the position on April 12, 2017. (Id.).

         “During the time that [p]laintiff worked in the PFE Department, she was directly supervised by Annie Brito [‘Brito'], her team leader.” (Id. ¶ 10). Brito was, among other things, responsible for training plaintiff and other new PFE Department employees. According to plaintiff, “Brito treated Plaintiff in a noticeably different manner than she treated other employees.” (Id. ¶ 11). According to plaintiff, “Brito routinely screamed at Plaintiff but did not scream at other employees.” (Id.).

         “Brito did not provide Plaintiff with adequate training and seemed to resent Plaintiff.” (Id. ¶ 12). “This failure to provide adequate training made it more difficult for Plaintiff to successfully perform her job duties.” (Id.). According to plaintiff, in “June 2017, [Brito] and Terri Veneziale [‘Veneziale'], the PFE Department Executive Director, had a discussion about Plaintiff within earshot of other PFE Department Employees, ” during which “Brito and []Veneziale speculated that Plaintiff had some sort of learning disability or early onset Alzheimer's.” (Id. ¶ 13).

         In late July 2017, Veneziale and Susan McFarland (“McFarland”), the PFE Department Manager, allegedly told plaintiff “that they believed Plaintiff had an auditory processing disorder, dyslexia and ADHD and that Plaintiff should be tested for these conditions.” (Id. ¶ 14). “Plaintiff agreed to utilize Defendant's EAP program for such testing because she wanted to keep her job as a PFE Specialist.” (Id.). A licensed psychologist examined plaintiff on August 10, 2017, and a follow-up was scheduled for August 29, 2017.[1] (Id. ¶ 15).

         McFarland and Brito told plaintiff on August 18, 2017, that she was going to be terminated and also advised plaintiff to resign. On August 21, 2017, plaintiff submitted a notice of resignation, and was, according to plaintiff, “effectively discharged from her PFE Specialist position.” (Id. ¶ 18). Results of plaintiff's psychological testing received after discharge “showed that Plaintiff did not have ADHD or any other learning disabilities.” (Id. ¶ 19).

         On January 29, 2018, plaintiff filed her EEOC charge, alleging that defendant had discharged plaintiff on account of her perceived disability. (Id. ¶ 21; see EEOC charge (DE 13-1)).[2]

         DISCUSSION

         A. ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.