Hansberry v. Postal Service (U.S.) et al
ORDER granting 4 Motion to Dismiss for Failure to State a Claim and dismissing the complaint without prejudice for failure to exhaust administrative remedies; and denying as moot 10 Motion to Extend Time. Signed by Judge D. P. Marshall Jr. on 12/16/13. (kpr)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF ARKANSAS
U.S. POSTAL SERVICE, PATRICK
DONAHOE, Postmaster General, USPS;
NATIONAL RURAL LETTER CARRIERS'
ASSOCIATION; and SHIRLEY BRANSCUM,
Arkansas representative, National Rural Letter
Tawana Hansberry is a rural letter carrier for the United States Postal
Service in Marianna, Arkansas. She also served as a local union steward for
the National Rural Letter Carriers Association for nearly ten years, before she
was decertified in May 2013. In this prose action, Hansberry alleges that the
USPS is discriminating against her based on race, color, and sex, N2 1 at 2, and
is retaliating against her because she complained about workplace
discrimination and participated in an employment discrimination case for
another USPS employee.
N2 1 at 6.
The NRLCA and its District
Representative, Shirley Branscum, are in the case because Hansberry says
they conspired with the USPS to decertify her as the local union steward. NQ 1
at 6. Hansberry asks that Defendants stop discriminating against her and
reinstate her union steward position. NQ 1 at 3.
But Hansberry, a postal employee, "must exhaust applicable
administrative remedies before commencing a Title VII action in federal
court." Patrick v. Henderson, 255 F.3d 914, 915 (8th Cir. 2001). Hansberry
twice requested pre-complaint counseling. NQ 1 at 8-10 & 13-15. And in
response to her requests, she received a letter from the USPS notifying her of
her right to file a formal administrative complaint, NQ 1 at 4. Hansberry
mistakes this letter for an EEOC right-to-sue letter, NQ 1 at 2. The USPS letter,
however, only authorized her to file an EEO complaint internally, not to file
a complaint in this Court. 29 C.F.R. § 1614.105.
Hansberry did not complete the administrative process before filing
suit. The complaint and its attachments reveal that she did not file a formal
administrative complaint within the required fifteen-day window. And she
never got a final administrative word on her allegations, which is a
precondition to suing. Hansberry therefore has failed to exhaust. Patrick, 255
Defendants' motion to dismiss, NQ 4, granted. Hansberry's complaint
is dismissed without prejudice for failure to exhaust her administrative
remedies. Motion, NQ 10, denied as moot.
D.P. Marshall Jr.
United States District Judge
16 December 2013
Disclaimer: Justia Dockets & Filings provides public litigation records from the federal appellate and district courts. These filings and docket sheets should not be considered findings of fact or liability, nor do they necessarily reflect the view of Justia.
Why Is My Information Online?