United States District Court, N.D. Illinois
April 28, 2004.
The opinion of the court was delivered by: JAMES ZAGEL, District Judge
The plaintiff, Nancy Messina, filed her original complaint on May 25,
2001 alleging sexual harassment, gender discrimination, violation of the
Equal Pay Act, and constructive discharge. Summary judgment was
subsequently granted to the defendant as to the sexual harassment claim.
Sigmatron now asserts that Messina's failure to report the sexual
harassment by a particular employee is fatal to her constructive
discharge claim as well and moves for summary judgment pursuant to Fed.
R. Civ. P. 56(c).
Summary judgment is proper when there is no genuine issue of material
fact and the moving party is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.
Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322-323 (1986). In determining
whether any genuine issue of material fact exists, I must construe all
facts in the light most favorable to the non-moving party and draw all
reasonable and justifiable inferences in its favor. Anderson v. Liberty
Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 255 (1986). A genuine issue of fact exists
only when, based on the record as a whole, a reasonable jury could find
for the non-movant. Pipitone v. United States, 180 F.3d 859, 861 (7th
According to the defendant, Messina's constructive discharge claim
rests solely upon the sexual harassment of a non-supervisory co-worker,
which she failed to report to her supervisors. "[A]n employee who quits
without first affording her employer a reasonable opportunity to resolve
a problem has not been constructively discharged." Wolf v. Northwest
Indiana Symphony Society, 250 F.3d 1136, 1143 (7th Cir. 2001). Contrary
to the defendant's assertions, Messina's complaint alleges many other
incidences of sex discrimination which led to her constructive
discharge, including discriminatory comments and actions by her
supervisor and senior management. The defendant's argument is,
therefore, not accurately based on the record at hand.
For the aforementioned reasons, the defendant's motion for summary
judgment is DENIED.
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