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Harvey v. Sharon Healthcare Woods, Inc.

United States District Court, C.D. Illinois, Peoria Division

July 17, 2017

MICHELLE HARVEY, Plaintiff,
v.
SHARON HEALTHCARE WOODS, INC. Defendant.

          ORDER & OPINION

          JOE BILLY McDADE United States Senior District Judge.

         The matter before the Court is Defendant Sharon Healthcare Woods Inc.'s Motion for Summary Judgment (Doc. 15). Plaintiff, a pro se litigant, has repeatedly failed to respond to Defendant's motion. For the following reasons, Defendant's motion is granted and the case is dismissed.

         I. Background

         All facts come from Defendant's Statement of Facts (Doc. 17). Plaintiff has failed to respond to Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment. Therefore, all factual assertions alleged by Defendant are deemed admitted. Wienco, Inc. v. Katahn Assocs., 965 F.2d 565, 568 (7th Cir. 1992); see also CDIL-LR 7.1(D)(2).

         Defendant is a network of supportive living, skilled nursing and behavioral health facilities specializing in the care of residents with serious mental illness. Defendant is located in Peoria, Illinois. Bobby Ford was the Head Administrator of Defendant's facility and Plaintiff's superior at the time of Plaintiff's separation from Defendant's employment.

         In October 1997, Defendant hired Plaintiff to work as a Certified Nursing Assistant. With Mr. Ford's support, Plaintiff received several promotions, which ultimately resulted in Plaintiff being promoted to Head Dietary Manager in 2006.

         Around 2012 or 2013, Plaintiff's relationship with Mr. Ford began to sour after he hired, and then subsequently fired, Plaintiff's son. At that point, Mr. Ford began reprimanding her for issues she considered trivial-such as having a dirty kitchen and not properly managing her staff. Plaintiff's prior supervisor, Laura Kneer, had also expressed discontent with Plaintiff's cleanliness and organization of the kitchen.

         In later 2012 and early 2013, Mr. Ford began noticing deficiencies in Plaintiff's job performance. Mr. Ford noted that Plaintiff had difficulties maintaining proper boundaries with the staff she supervised, and had difficulties with scheduling and keeping the kitchen properly staff. In 2013, Mr. Ford began working with Plaintiff to improve her performance, which including mentoring her and implementing a checklist to help her. In June 2014, Mr. Ford gave Plaintiff thirty days to make improvements to her staffing and the cleanliness of her kitchen. In November 2014, there were multiple disruptions in the kitchen, including a weekend where it was seriously understaffed. Mr. Ford expressed his concerns with Plaintiff's management of the kitchen.

         On May 15, 2015, Mr. Ford and another supervisor met with Plaintiff to discuss her performance. At that meeting, Mr. Ford informed Plaintiff that he wanted to move in a different direction and that Plaintiff was not an effective leader. Plaintiff interrupted, stood up, exclaimed she would never be “good enough, ” and walked out of the meeting. Mr. Ford then determined he wanted to terminate her. Plaintiff was the only dietary manager and was replaced by a female.

         At the time of Plaintiff's termination, she was earning $16.51 per hour. The average rate for a dietary manager was approximately $15.00 per hour; however wages may vary based on prior experience, education, certification, and tenure. During her deposition, Plaintiff stated that she does not have information regarding other dietary manager's compensation or information to substantiate the claim that male dietary managers were paid more. Additionally, she explained that her claim was based on the fact that she once saw the paycheck stub of her male predecessor and that he was earning $17.00 per hour, but she did not know anything about his prior experience, education, or tenure.

         On June 16, 2016, Plaintiff filed the instant Complaint, alleging that Defendant discriminated against her on the basis of her sex and that Defendant violated the Equal Pay Act.

         Because Plaintiff did not respond to Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment nor did Plaintiff contest Defendant's Statement of Uncontroverted Facts the following facts must be deemed admitted by Plaintiff: neither Mr. Ford, nor any other supervisor in Defendant's employment, has ever made a disparaging comment about women or has distinguished Plaintiff's gender as female, and Defendant does not have policies or demonstrated patterns of practice that disparage women or favor male employees. Additionally, Plaintiff stated during her deposition that she does not have any support for her allegations that female employees were treated differently or that she was personally treated differently because she is a woman.

         II. Legal Standards

         Summary judgment shall be granted where “the movant shows that there is no genuine dispute as to any material fact and the movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a). In ruling on a motion for summary judgment, the Court must view the evidence in the light most favorable to the non-moving party. SMS Demag Aktiengesellschaft v. Material Scis. Corp., 565 F.3d 365, 368 (7th Cir. 2009). All inferences drawn from the facts must be construed in favor of the non-movant. Moore v. Vital Prods., Inc., 641 F.3d 253, 256 (7th Cir. 2011). However, the Court is “not required to draw ...


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