United States District Court, N.D. Illinois, Eastern Division
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
Hudson brought this pro se suit under 42 U.S.C.
§ 1981 and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42
U.S.C. § 2000e et seq., against Miramed Revenue
Group, his former employer. Doc. 6. Discovery has closed, and
a jury trial is set for January 30, 2017. Doc. 33. Miramed
has moved for summary judgment. Doc. 37. The motion is
with the local rules, Miramed filed a Local Rule 56.1(a)(3)
statement of undisputed facts along with its summary judgment
motion. Doc. 42. Each factual assertion in the Local Rule
56.1(a)(3) statement cites evidentiary material in the record
and is supported by the cited material. See N.D.
Ill. L.R. 56.1(a) (“The statement referred to
in (3) shall consist of short numbered paragraphs, including
within each paragraph specific references to the affidavits,
parts of the record, and other supporting materials relied
upon to support the facts set forth in that
paragraph.”). Local Rule 56.1(b)(3)(B) required Hudson
to file a “concise response to [Miramed's]
statement that shall contain … a response to each
numbered paragraph in the moving party's statement,
including, in the case of any disagreement, specific
references to the affidavits, parts of the record, and other
supporting materials relied upon.” N.D.Ill. L.R.
56.1(b)(3)(B). Despite having been served with a Local Rule
56.2 Notice, Doc. 43, which explained in detail the
requirements of Local Rule 56.1, Hudson did not properly
respond in the manner required by Local Rule 56.1(b)(3)(B).
did file a two-page document entitled “56.1(3)
statement of disputed facts, ” Doc. 49, but that
document does not comply with Local Rule 56.1(b)(3)(B). As
just noted, Local Rule 56.1(b)(3)(B) requires the non-movant
to file “a response to each numbered paragraph in the
moving party's statement, including, in the case of any
disagreement, specific references to the affidavits, parts of
the record, and other supporting materials relied
upon.” N.D.Ill. L.R. 56.1(b)(3)(B). Hudson's
two-page document neither contains numbered paragraphs nor
syncs up with the factual assertions set forth in
Miramed's Local Rule 56.1(a)(3) statement, so it comes
nowhere close to qualifying as a Local Rule 56.1(b)(3)(B)
Seventh Circuit “has consistently upheld district
judges' discretion to require strict compliance with
Local Rule 56.1.” Flint v. City of Belvidere,
791 F.3d 764, 767 (7th Cir. 2015) (citing cases); see
also Stevo v. Frasor, 662 F.3d 880, 886-87 (7th Cir.
2011) (“Because of the high volume of summary judgment
motions and the benefits of clear presentation of relevant
evidence and law, we have repeatedly held that district
judges are entitled to insist on strict compliance with local
rules designed to promote the clarity of summary judgment
filings.”). Here, the problem is not that Hudson failed
to strictly comply with Local Rule 56.1(b)(3)(B);
rather, it is that he did not comply at all. This
court need not and will not attempt to map the factual
assertions in Hudson's “56.1(3) statement of
disputed facts” onto the factual assertions in
Miramed's Local Rule 56.1(a)(3) statement to determine
whether Hudson has adduced a genuine dispute of material fact
as to any of Miramed's assertions; that is the purpose of
a properly constructed Local Rule 56.1(b)(3)(B) response.
See Curtis v. Costco Wholesale Corp., 807 F.3d 215,
219 (7th Cir. 2015) (“The purpose of Rule 56.1
is to have the litigants present to the district court a
clear, concise list of material facts that are central to the
summary judgment determination. It is the litigants' duty
to clearly identify material facts in dispute and provide the
admissible evidence that tends to prove or disprove the
proffered fact. A litigant who denies a material fact is
required to provide the admissible evidence that supports his
denial in a clear, concise, and obvious fashion, for quick
reference of the court. The district court did not abuse its
discretion in finding Curtis failed to comply with Rule
56.1 requirements.”); Cracco v. Vitran
Express, Inc., 559 F.3d 625, 632 (7th Cir. 2009)
(“Because of the important function local rules like
Rule 56.1 serve in organizing the evidence and identifying
disputed facts, we have consistently upheld the district
court's discretion to require strict compliance with
status as a pro se litigant does not excuse his
failure to comply with Local Rule 56.1(b)(3)(B). See
McNeil v. United States, 508 U.S. 106, 113 (1993)
(“[W]e have never suggested that procedural rules in
ordinary civil litigation should be interpreted so as to
excuse mistakes by those who proceed without
counsel.”); Coleman v. Goodwill Indus. of Se. Wis.,
Inc., 423 F. App'x 642, 643 (7th Cir. 2011)
(“Though courts are solicitous of pro se litigants,
they may nonetheless require strict compliance with local
rules.”); Wilson v. Kautex, Inc., 371 F.
App'x 663, 664 (7th Cir. 2010) (“[S]trictly
enforcing Local Rule 56.1 was well within the district
court's discretion, even though Wilson is a pro se
litigant.”) (citations omitted); Cady v.
Sheahan, 467 F.3d 1057, 1061 (7th Cir. 2006)
(“[E]ven pro se litigants must follow rules of civil
procedure.”). Given Hudson's failure to comply with
Local Rule 56.1(b)(3)(B), the facts set forth in
Miramed's Local Rule 56.1(a)(3) statement are deemed
admitted. See N.D. Ill. L.R. 56.1(b)(3)(C)
(“All material facts set forth in the statement
required of the moving party will be deemed to be admitted
unless controverted by the statement of the opposing
party.”); Curtis, 807 F.3d at 218 (“When
a responding party's statement fails to dispute the facts
set forth in the moving party's statement in the manner
dictated by the rule, those facts are deemed admitted for
purposes of the motion.”); Keeton v. Morningstar,
Inc., 667 F.3d 877, 880, 884 (7th Cir. 2012); Parra
v. Neal, 614 F.3d 635, 636 (7th Cir. 2010); Rao v.
BP Prods. N. Am., Inc., 589 F.3d 389, 393 (7th Cir.
2009); Ciomber v. Cooperative Plus, Inc., 527 F.3d
635, 643-44 (7th Cir. 2008); Raymond v. Ameritech
Corp., 442 F.3d 600, 608 (7th Cir. 2006).
proceeding to the facts, it bears mention that Hudson's
two-page document might be considered a Local Rule
56.1(b)(3)(C) statement of additional facts. Like Local Rule
56.1(b)(3)(B), however, Local Rule 56.1(b)(3)(C) requires
“references to the affidavits, parts of the record, and
other supporting materials relied upon.” N.D.Ill. L.R.
56.1(b)(3)(C). Hudson's document does not cite any record
material, and so its assertions are not properly part of the
summary judgment record.
court is mindful that “a nonmovant's failure to
… comply with Local Rule 56.1 … does not
… automatically result in judgment for the movant.
… [The movant] must still demonstrate that it is
entitled to judgment as a matter of law.”
Keeton, 667 F.3d at 884. The court therefore will
recite the facts in Miramed's Local Rule 56.1(a)(3)
statement and then determine whether, on those facts, Miramed
is entitled to summary judgment. The court sets forth the
following facts as favorably to Hudson, the non-movant, as
the record and Local Rule 56.1 allow. See Woods v. City
of Berwyn, 803 F.3d 865, 867 (7th Cir. 2015). In
considering Miramed's motion, the court must assume the
truth of those facts, but does not vouch for them. See
Arroyo v. Volvo Grp. N. Am., 805 F.3d 278, 281 (7th Cir.
began working for Miramed as a debt collector in September
2012. Doc. 42 at ¶ 1. He worked on a “dialer
team” within the “Self Pay” department.
Id. at ¶ 4. Each member of the dialer team was
given information about a person who was indebted to a
Miramed customer, and the member's job was to call that
person to try to work out a payment plan. Ibid. At
the end of each call, a computer would generate the
employee's next assignment. Ibid. Hudson was the
only African-American male in the department at certain
points, but fifteen other African-American males worked in
the department at other points during the same period.
Id. at ¶ 13. The majority of employees in
Hudson's department were African American for his entire
tenure at Miramed. Id. at ¶ 27.
in Hudson's department received an hourly base salary and
were eligible for commissions if they met monthly targets.
Id. at ¶ 5. Each collector made the same type
of calls and was eligible for the same commissions.
Id. at ¶ 6. Hudson's duties did not change
throughout his employment, and neither did his base hourly
wage of $11.50. Id. at ¶¶ 1, 5. Like many
other collectors, Hudson never received a high enough score
on an individual performance review to be eligible for an
increase in hourly pay. Id. at ¶ 23. Even
though his base salary never increased, Hudson did receive
commissions. Id. at ¶ 17. Hudson's seat
assignment and phone extension changed several times, but
there is no evidence that those changes affected his income.
Id. at ¶ 19.
were several occasions when Hudson notified Miramed of errors
it had made. At one point, management transferred from Hudson
to another collector the account of a Miramed customer named
Miller. Id. at ¶ 9. Hudson spoke to his
supervisor, and then Miller's account was transferred
back to Hudson; there is no evidence that this temporary
transfer affected Hudson's compensation. Ibid.
Separately, Miramed was once late in processing the payment
of a customer named Turner, so Hudson did not receive credit
for the transaction until the following month; there is no
evidence to refute Miramed's explanation that the payment
form had been misplaced. Id. at ¶¶ 9-10.
On another occasion, money was incorrectly deducted from
Hudson's paycheck, but a check for the amount of the
underpayment was issued to him the following week.
Id. at ¶ 16.
had some minor health problems while at Miramed. On one day
when he was not feeling well, Hudson asked his supervisor to
speak to the Human Resources representative. Id. at
¶ 18. The supervisor replied, “Don't you see
I'm doing something? I'm checking my voice
mails.” Ibid. Hudson had to wait several
minutes to be taken to Human Resources, and then his request
to leave for the day was granted. Ibid. Hudson also
suffered a hematoma after donating blood at a Miramed blood
drive. Id. at ¶ 24. He used four hours of paid