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Street v. Ingalls Memorial Hospital

January 17, 2007


The opinion of the court was delivered by: Amy J. St. Eve United States District Court Judge


AMY J. ST. EVE, District Judge

On December 21, 2006, Plaintiff Cheryl Street filed a three-count First Amended Complaint alleging disability discrimination under the Americans with Disabilities Act ("ADA"), 42 U.S.C. § 12131, et seq., against her former employer, Defendant Ingalls Memorial Hospital ("Ingalls") and two claims pursuant to the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 ("ERISA"), 29 U.S.C. § 1001, et seq., against Ingalls as a plan administrator and fiduciary. In a previous order, the Court dismissed Count II of Street's First Amended Complaint because ERISA did not govern the applicable short-term disability policy at issue. The Court also dismissed Street's claims for monetary relief in Count III of the First Amended Complaint and granted Street leave to amend her long-term disability claim. In the her Second Amended Complaint, Street alleges a failure to accommodate claim under the ADA, but does not re-allege her long-term disability claim.

Before the Court are the parties' cross-motions for summary judgment pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 56(c) regarding Street's failure to accommodate claim. For the following reasons, the Court denies both Ingalls' and Street's summary judgment motions because there are genuine issues of material fact for trial.


I. Northern District of Illinois Local Rule 56.1

When determining summary judgment motions, the Court derives the background facts from the parties' Local Rule 56.1 statements. Local Rule 56.1 assists the Court by "organizing the evidence, identifying undisputed facts, and demonstrating precisely how each side propose[s] to prove a disputed fact with admissible evidence." Bordelon v. Chicago Sch. Reform Bd. of Trs., 233 F.3d 524, 527 (7th Cir. 2000). The purpose of Rule 56.1 statements is to identify the relevant evidence supporting the material facts, not to make factual or legal arguments. See Cady v. Sheahan, 467 F.3d 1057, 1060 (7th Cir. 2006); Solaia Tech. LLC v. Arvinmeritor, Inc., 361 F.Supp.2d 797, 826-27 (N.D. Ill. 2005).

A litigant's failure to respond to a Local Rule 56.1 statement results in the Court admitting the uncontroverted statement as true. Raymond v. Ameritech Corp., 442 F.3d 600, 608 (7th Cir. 2006). In addition, the requirements for responses under Local Rule 56.1 are "not satisfied by evasive denials that do not fairly meet the substance of the material facts asserted." Bordelon, 233 F.3d at 528. Finally, the Court may disregard statements and responses that do not properly cite to the record. See Cichon v. Exelon Generation Co., L.L.C. 401 F.3d 803, 809-10 (7th Cir. 2005); Brasic v. Heinemann's Inc., 121 F.3d 281, 284 (7th Cir. 1997). With these standards in mind, the Court turns to the relevant facts of this case.

II. Relevant Facts

A. Parties

Ingalls has approximately seven medical care facilities in the Chicago area and its main campus is located in Harvey, Illinois. (R. 102-1, Def.'s Rule 56.1 Stmt. Facts ¶ 3.) Since 1971, Street has been a registered nurse licensed to practice in Illinois. (R. 121-2, Pl.'s Rule 56.1 Stmt. Facts ¶ 3.) In October 2002, Street began working at Ingalls as an urgent aid nurse. (Id. ¶ 5; Def.'s Stmt. Facts. ¶ 4.) After approximately eleven months, Ingalls promoted Street to the RN Case Manager position for the Occupational Medicine Departments at Ingalls' Calumet City and Tinley Park Family Care Centers, which was the position Street held until Ingalls terminated her employment in March 2005. (Pl.'s Stmt. Facts ¶ 5; Def.'s Stmt. Facts ¶ 5.)

B. RN Case Manager Job Description

The job description for the RN Case Manager position provides: POSITION REQUIREMENTS Physical/mental demands described below are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of the job. Ingalls Hospital will make reasonable accommodations to allow employees with disabilities to perform the essential functions. While performing the duties of this job, the employee is frequently required to:

* Assist patients of varying physical ability and size in the movements required for clinical care.

* Perform clinical duties consistent with standard nurse practice.

* File, operate a computer, complete paperwork.

* Communicate with co-workers, patients, physicians, etc.

* Work varying shifts, which may include days, evenings, weekends, holidays. Schedules and shifts may rotate.

* Provide service in a friendly, calm, professional manner to all internal and external customers in situations which may ...

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