The opinion of the court was delivered by: ASPEN
MARVIN E. ASPEN, Chief Judge:
Plaintiff Sasha Sophie Jablonski brings this employment discrimination action under the American with Disabilities Act (ADA), 42 U.S.C. §§ 12111-12117, alleging that Defendant Chas. Levy Circulating refused to hire her due to a knee disability. Previously, we denied Levy Circulating's motion for summary judgment, but ordered supplemental briefing on one issue cursorily raised in that motion. After considering the supplemental briefs, we now deny the defendant's motion on the remaining issue.
For brevity's sake, we assume familiarity with the factual background discussed in our prior opinions. In Levy Circulating's reply brief on its earlier summary judgment motion, the defendant sketchily contended that Jablonski was not qualified for any of the jobs open during the time she applied. Accordingly, we ordered supplemental briefing on the following issue: "whether there were any positions available for which Jablonski was 'qualified,' § 12111(8), during the period of time in which the plaintiff was applying for employment with the defendant." Memorandum Op. at 8 (Dec. 21, 1995).
As evidence of available positions for which she was qualified, Jablonski points to two groups of jobs: (1) seven positions actually filled by Levy Circulating on various dates from October 1992 to May 1993; and (2) seven requisitions for jobs--presumably for positions other than those actually filled--that various supervisors submitted to Levy Circulating's human resources department from June 1992 to May 1993. The plaintiff avers that she "had the experience and the education required to perform" the Customer Service Representative and Accounts Receivable Clerk positions, and "with my education, Levy experience and a minimum of training," she could have filled the other types of available jobs. Pl.'s Aff. P 3(a)-(c).
As to the seven staffing requisitions, the defendant argues in response that those positions all required a high school diploma. Indeed, the requisition forms proffered by Jablonski do express a requirement for that level of education. See Pl.'s Supp. Br., Ex. B. Because the plaintiff did not meet this requirement, Levy Circulating maintains, she was not "qualified" for these positions under the ADA:
§ 12111(8). The regulations promulgated pursuant to the ADA elaborate:
Qualified individual with a disability means an individual with a disability who satisfies the requisite skill, experience, education and other job-related requirements of the employment position such individual . . . desires, and who, with or without reasonable accommodation, can perform the essential functions of such position.
29 C.F.R. § 1630.2(m) (second emphasis added). Accordingly, not only must the plaintiff be able to perform the essential job functions, with or without reasonable accommodation, she must also "meet the necessary prerequisites for the job, such as education, experience, training and the like." Benson v. Northwest Airlines, 62 F.3d 1108, 1111-12 (8th Cir. 1995).
In the instant case, Jablonski avers that she had the "experience" and "education" to perform the seven requisitioned jobs. Pl.s' Aff. P 3. However, the plaintiff fails to offer any explanation why the high school graduate requirement should not apply to her. While it is true that Jablonski was hired in 1985 without a high school degree, the seven requisitions plainly list high school completion as a requirement. Pl.'s Supp. Br., Ex. B. Without pointing to additional evidence
to rebut Levy Circulating's assertion that a high school degree was required for the requisitioned positions, no reasonable factfinder could determine that Jablonski was qualified for those positions.
However, as to the first group of jobs relied upon by Jablonski--the seven positions actually filled from October 1992 to May 1993--there exists a genuine issue as to whether the plaintiff was qualified. Levy Circulating fails to point to any evidence showing that a high school diploma was required for the filled positions. Indeed, the defendant does not discuss any evidence regarding the qualifications of those positions.
In light of such a failure, Levy Circulating has failed to even meet its initial responsibility in moving for summary judgment on this bases. See Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 323, 91 L. Ed. 2d 265, 106 S. Ct. 2548 (1986).
Levy Circulating's final argument rehashes an earlier one: that the plaintiff's applications were in the nature of requests for reinstatement from her earlier termination-which occurred prior to the ADA's effective date--rather than new applications leading to new discriminatory acts. The defendant commits a disservice by dressing this previously rejected argument regarding the ADA's applicability as an argument regarding the sole issue upon which we ordered supplemental briefing: whether Jablonski was qualified for a position available during the relevant ...