Sharp v. Milton S. Hershey Medical Center (Penn State)
MEMORANDUM (eo, )
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE MIDDLE DISTRICT OF PENNSYLVANIA
MILTON S. HERSHEY MEDICAL :
CENTER (PENN STATE),
Hon. John E. Jones III
Hon. J. Andrew Smyser
November 23, 2011
THE BACKGROUND OF THIS MEMORANDUM IS AS FOLLOWS:
This matter is before the Court on the Report and Recommendation
(“R&R”) of Magistrate Judge J. Andrew Smyser (Doc. 39), filed on November 1,
2011, which recommends that the Defendant’s Motion for Summary Judgment
(Doc. 15) be granted, that summary judgment be entered in favor of the Defendant
and that this case be closed. No objections to the R&R have been filed by any
party.1 For the reasons set forth below, the Court will adopt the R&R.
Objections were due by November 18, 2011.
STANDARD OF REVIEW
When, as here, no objections are made to a magistrate judge’s report and
recommendation, the district court is not statutorily required to review the report
before accepting it. Thomas v. Arn, 474 U.S. 140, 149 (1985). According to the
Third Circuit, however, “the better practice is to afford some level of review to
dispositive legal issues raised by the report.” Henderson v. Carlson, 812 F.2d 874,
878 (3d Cir. 1987). “[T]he court need only satisfy itself that there is no clear error
on the face of the record in order to accept the recommendation.” Fed. R. Civ. P.
72(b), advisory committee notes; see also Henderson, 812 F.2d at 878-79 (stating
“the failure of a party to object to a magistrate's legal conclusions may result in the
loss of the right to de novo review in the district court”); Tice v. Wilson, 425 F.
Supp. 2d 676, 680 (W.D. Pa. 2006); Cruz v. Chater, 990 F. Supp. 375-78 (M.D. Pa.
1998); Oldrati v. Apfel, 33 F. Supp. 2d 397, 399 (E.D. Pa. 1998). The Court’s
examination of this case confirms the Magistrate Judge’s determinations.
Plaintiff Andrea Sharp (“Plaintiff” or “Sharp”) filed this employment
discrimination case claiming that her employer, Defendant Milton S. Hershey
Medical Center (Penn State), discriminated against her2 based on her disability, sex,
age, race, and national origin.3 She also alleges that the Defendant retaliated against
her because she complained of the alleged discriminatory treatment.
The Defendant filed a motion for summary judgment, requesting that the
Court grant the motion for the following reasons:
that the Plaintiff failed to exhaust her administrative remedies before
seeking a judicial remedy as to her disability discrimination claims;
that some of the Plaintiff’s claims are barred because she did not
timely file administrative charges as to those claims;
that the Plaintiff did not suffer an adverse employment action with
respect to some of her discriminations claims;
that the Plaintiff has not presented evidence from which a reasonable
fact finder could conclude that the legitimate nondiscriminatory
reasons asserted by the Defendant for not hiring her for three
supervisory positions were pretexts for discrimination;
We shall not recite the lengthy factual background of this case, but instead will refer the
reader to pages 7 to 18 of the unobjected to R&R, wherein the Magistrate Judge recounts the
undisputed material facts of this matter.
As such, Plaintiff brings her claims pursuant to the Americans with Disabilities Act,
Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, 42 U.S.C.
§§ 1981 and 1983 and the Pennsylvania Human Relations Act.
that the Plaintiff has not presented evidence that she was subject to
harassment that was sufficiently severe or pervasive to alter the
conditions of her employment and to create a hostile work
that several of the actions cited by the Plaintiff as retaliatory were not
in the nature of an adverse action;
that Plaintiff failed to show a causal connection between her
participation in protected activity and the alleged adverse actions with
respect to her retaliation claims; and finally
that Plaintiff has abandoned her Section 1981 and 1983 claims.
Following full briefing on the motion for summary judgment, Magistrate
Judge Smyser issued an exhaustive 42-page R&R wherein he reviewed all of the
Plaintiff’s claims and the Defendants arguments. We now turn to our review of the
As noted above, Magistrate Judge Smyser rendered a thorough R&R on the
Defendant’s motion for summary judgment and neither party has lodged objections
thereto. Accordingly, we are not required to perform a de novo analysis of the R&R
but may place significant reliance on the Magistrate Judge’s analysis, if we find the
analysis to be correct. Thus, with that in mind, we turn to a summary of the salient
points of the Magistrate Judge’s R&R.
First Magistrate Judge Smyser correctly concludes that various incidents of
alleged discrimination are barred because the Plaintiff did not file her administrative
complaints in a timely manner as to those claims. Second, the Magistrate Judge
finds that, with respect to several of the alleged acts of discrimination, Plaintiff did
not suffer an adverse employment action, and thus correctly recommends summary
judgment on those claims. Third, the Magistrate Judge concludes, and we agree,
that the Defendant’s proffered legitimate non-discriminatory reasons for not hiring
Plaintiff to three supervisory positions are not pretext. Next, the Magistrate Judge
finds that Plaintiff has not established a prima facie case for a hostile work
environment because the conduct complained of was not sufficiently severe or
pervasive to rise to the level of a hostile work environment. With respect to
Plaintiff’s retaliation claims, she cannot establish either that she suffered a
materially adverse employment action nor can she establish a causal link between
protected activity and later alleged retaliatory conduct, thus warranting summary
judgment on the retaliation claims. Finally, we wholly agree with Magistrate Judge
Smyser that Plaintiff has abandoned her Section 1981 and 1983 claims by failing to
respond to any of the Defendant’s arguments concerning these claims in the motion
As we have already mentioned, neither the Defendant nor the Plaintiff have
filed objections to this R&R. Because we agree with the sound reasoning that led
the Magistrate Judge to the conclusions in the R&R, we will adopt the R&R in its
entirety. With a mind towards conserving judicial resources, we will not rehash the
reasoning of the Magistrate Judge; rather, we will attach a copy of the R&R to this
document, as it accurately reflects our consideration and resolution of the case sub
judice. An appropriate Order shall issue.
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