U.S. EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY COMMISSION v. BOB EVANS FARMS, LLC
OPINION. Signed by Judge Mark R. Hornak on 8/17/17. (bdb)
IN THE UNITED ST ATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE WESTERN DISTRICT OF PENNSYLVANIA
U.S. EQUAL EMPLOYMENT
Civil Action No. 2:15-cv-1237
BOB EV ANS FARMS, LLC,
Judge Mark R. Hornak
Mark R. Hornak, United States District Judge
It is the rare lawsuit in which the record entitles a plaintiff to the grant of summary
judgment in its favor. This is one of those cases.
This case stems from the removal of Hayley Nadalin, nee Macioce ("Macioce"), 1 who
was pregnant at the time, from the automatic shift scheduling process utilized by the Bob Evans
Farms, LLC ("Bob Evans") restaurant located in West Mifflin, Pennsylvania ("West Mifflin Bob
Evans"), where she worked as a server.
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
("EEOC") brings this action alleging pregnancy discrimination pursuant to Title VII of the Civil
Rights of 1964 ("Title VII"), 42 U.S.C. § 2000e et. seq., and certain amendments thereto,
including the Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978 ("PDA"), 42 U.S.C. § 2000e(k), and Title I
of the Civil Rights Act of 1991, 42 U.S.C. § 198la.
The EEOC, charged with the enforcement of Title VII, is authorized by 42 U.S.C. §
2000e-5(f)(l) and (3) to bring this action. It seeks compensatory damages, punitive damages,
back pay and injunctive relief. Both parties have moved for summary judgment. (ECF Nos. 58
Hayley Macioce changed her name to Hayley Nadal in after her marriage in April of 2015, see (ECF No. 64-1 at 5
[Macioce Dep. at 14]). The Court refers to her as Macioce throughout.
and 61). The EEOC moves for partial summary judgment, seeking judgment in its favor on
liability and as to the "good faith" defense to punitive damages asserted by Bob Evans. (ECF
No. 58). It also seeks an order setting a trial schedule for a jury to determine damages under 42
U.S.C. § 1981 a and for the Court to determine the amount of any back pay to be awarded for the
benefit of Macioce.
Bob Evans moves for summary judgment on the pregnancy
discrimination claim against it, and also alternatively seeks summary judgment on the EEOC's
claims for emotional distress, damages, and injunctive relief. (ECF No. 61 ).
STANDARD ON SUMMARY JUDGMENT
Summary judgment is appropriate when "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); Celotex
Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322-23, 106 S.Ct. 2548, 91L.Ed.2d265 (1986). The parties must
support their position by "citing to particular parts of materials in the record, including
depositions, documents, electronically stored information, affidavits or declarations, stipulations
(including those made for purposes of the motion only), admissions, interrogatory answers, or
other materials." Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(c)(l)(A).
Once that burden has been met, the non-moving party must set forth "specific facts
showing that there is a genuine issue for trial, " or the factual record will be taken as presented
by the moving party and judgment will be entered as a matter of law. Matsushita Electric
Industrial Co. v. Zenith Radio Corp., 475 U.S. 574, 106 S.Ct. 1348, 89 L.Ed.2d 538 (1986)
(quoting Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a), (e)) (emphasis in Matsushita). To meet its burden, the "opponent
must do more than simply show that there is some metaphysical doubt as to the material facts."
Matsushita, 475 U.S. at 586. The non-moving party "must present affirmative evidence in order
to defeat a properly supported motion" and cannot "simply reassert factually unsupported
allegations." Williams v. Borough of West Chester, 891F.2d458, 460 (3d Cir.1989). Moreover,
a party's labelling or characterizing a fact as "disputed" does not make it so--the record
evidence the opposing party points to must support the dispute of fact, whether through
reasonable inference or otherwise.
If the non-moving party's evidence merely is colorable or
lacks sufficient probative force, summary judgment must be granted. Anderson v. Liberty Lobby,
Inc. 477 U.S. 242, 249-50, 106 S.Ct. 2505, 91 L.Ed.2d 202 (1986).
In other words, summary judgment may be granted only if there exists no genuine issue
of material fact that would permit a reasonable jury to find for the nonmoving party. See id. at
250. "Where the record taken as a whole could not lead a reasonable trier of fact to find for the
nonmoving party, there is no 'genuine issue for trial."' Matsushita, 475 U.S. at 587; Huston v.
Procter & Gamble Paper Products Corp., 568 F.3d 100, 104 (3d Cir.2009).
In reviewing the record evidence, the court draws all reasonable inferences in favor of the
non-moving party. See Reeves v. Sanderson Plumbing Prods., Inc., 530 U.S. 133, 150, 120 S.Ct.
2097, 147 L.Ed.2d 105 (2000); Matsushita, 475 U.S. at 587-88; Huston, 568 F.3d at 104
(citations omitted). It is not the court's role to weigh the disputed evidence and decide which is
more probative, or to make credibility determinations. See Anderson, 477 U.S. at 255; Marino v.
Indus. Crating Co., 358 F.3d 241, 247 (3d Cir.2004); Boyle v. Cnty. of Allegheny, 139 F.3d 386,
393 (3d Cir.1998). "Only disputes over facts that might affect the outcome of the suit under the
governing law will properly preclude the entry of summary judgment." Anderson, 477 U.S. at
247-48. "Where the defendant is the moving party, the initial burden is on the defendant to show
that the plaintiff has failed to establish one or more essential elements to his case." See Podobnik
v. US. Postal Serv., 409 F.3d 584, 589 (3d Cir.2005) (citing Celotex Corp., 477 U.S. at 323-24).
"On cross-motions for summary judgment, the law in our Circuit is clear-the Court
considers each Motion on its own merits, tested against the standards of [Federal Rule of Civil
Procedure 56]." Wallace v. Nat'! Indem. of Mid-Am., 2:14-cv-1253, 2016 WL 6948781, at *1
(W.D. Pa. July 8, 2016) (citing JS. ex rel. Snyder v. Blue Mountain Sch. Dist., 650 F.3d 915, 925
(3d Cir. 2011)); see also Home for Crippled Children v. Prudential Insurance Co., 590 F. Supp.
1490, 1495 (W.D. Pa. 1984).
Accordingly, in considering whether either such motion now
before the Court should be granted, "as to the Plaintiffs Motion, I am to view the record facts in
a light most favorable to the Defendant. As to the Defendant's Motion, the opposite is the rule."
Wallace, 2016 WL 6948781, at *l. On cross-motions, seemingly contradictory positions do "not
constitute an agreement that if one is rejected the other is necessarily justified or that the losing
party waives . . . determination [of] whether genuine issues of material fact exist," Rains v.
Cascade Industries, Inc., 402 F.2d 241, 245 (3d Cir.1968), preventing judgment in favor of the
The standards under which a court grants or denies each party summary judgment
do not change by virtue of cross-motions being presented. Home for Crippled Children, 590 F.
Supp. at 1495.
Succeeding on an affirmative summary judgment motion filed by a plaintiff, such as that
filed by the EEOC here, can prove a particularly difficult but not insurmountable task. This is
because the EEOC, as plaintiff:
bears the burden of proof on the [discrimination] claim. "After all, the burden of
proof includes the obligation to persuade the factfinder that one's propositions of
fact are indeed true. Thus, if there is a chance that a reasonable factfinder would
not accept a moving party's necessary propositions of fact, pre-trial judgment
cannot be granted. Specious objections will not, of course, defeat a motion for
summary judgment, but real questions about credibility, gaps in the evidence, and
doubts as to the sufficiency of the movant's proof, will."
Wallace, 2016 WL 6948781, at *3 n. 2 (citing El v. Se. Pennsylvania Transp. Auth. (SEPTA),
479 F.3d 232, 238 (3d Cir. 2007)).
The following material facts are undisputed 2 unless otherwise noted. In 2009, Macioce
began working as a server at the West Mifflin Bob Evans. (ECF Nos. 60 [EEOC's Concise
Statement of Material Facts], 72 [Bob Evans' Response to EEOC's Concise Statement of
1). As a part-time server, Macioce was not guaranteed any set number of
work hours. (ECF Nos. 63 [Bob Evans' Concise Statement of Material Facts], 75 [EEOC's
Response to Bob Evans' Concise Statement of Material Facts],
17). In 2012, at a time when
Jay Moreau ("Moreau") was then the Assistant General Manager at her location, (ECF No. 64-1
at 7), Macioce gave birth to her first child. She neither needed nor took leave prior to childbirth
in 2012, and she requested and received leave after that childbirth without any problem. (ECF
19, 20, 21; 75,
By 2014, Jay Moreau ("Moreau") was the General Manager at the West Mifflin Bob
Evans. (ECF Nos. 60, 72, at
As General Manager, Moreau's responsibilities included
shift-scheduling, and he also was one of the people designated by Bob Evans to implement its
anti-discrimination policies and procedures. (ECF Nos. 60, 72, at
4, 5, 6). Throughout his
employment at Bob Evans, Moreau was aware that it is illegal to discriminate as to terms and
conditions of employment on the basis of pregnancy. (ECF Nos. 60, 72,
Bob Evans uses an automated computer-based scheduling system to create employee
schedules based on factors such as employees' availability and the anticipated needs of the
restaurant. (ECF Nos. 60, 72,
8). Subject to manager approval, servers are able to change
The facts are taken from the evidence of record that is either undisputed as indicated by the parties, or not fairly
disputed on the record. Disputed facts are viewed in the light most favorable to the nonmoving party in accordance
with Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 255 (1986).
their own availability in the computer system for the purpose of the automatically generated shift
schedule. (ECF Nos. 60, 72, at ,-i 9).
According to Bob Evans' Employee Handbook, its seven-day workweek runs from the
beginning of business on Thursdays and ends at the close of business on Wednesdays. (ECF No.
58-10). In his deposition, Moreau explained the scheduling process. Although the General
Manager is responsible for the schedule, the Assistant General Manager also has scheduling
duties, including filling in any gaps if there are any glaring holes in the automatically generated
schedule and addressing issues such as when a scheduled employee calls in sick. (ECF Nos. 643 at 25; 58-3 at 18 [Moreau Dep. at 73, 74]). The automatic scheduling system generates a
schedule on the Thursday two weeks in advance of that schedule's start, to which last-minute
changes or adjustments typically may be made by management up until the following
Wednesday, and then the next day, on Thursday, employees have access to see the "finalized"
schedule on-line and where it is posted on an office door. (ECF No. 58-3 at 11-14 [Moreau Dep.
at 40, 42, 43, 44]). Moreau also could handwrite or "pencil-in" someone onto the finalized
posted schedule. (ECF No. 64-3 at 21 [Moreau Dep. at 57]). So, for example, the automatically
generated schedule for the workweek beginning Thursday, August 7, 2014, initially would have
been generated as a draft on Thursday, July 24, 2014, to which last-minute changes or
adjustments would have been made in the system by management up until the following
Wednesday, July 30, 2014, and then it would have been posted on Thursday, July 31, 2014,
detailing for employees the schedule for work hours that began on August 7, 2014.
64-3 at 11-15 [Moreau Dep. at 41-46]).
From January 1, 2014 through July 1, 2014, Macioce averaged approximately 22 hours of
work a week. (ECF Nos. 63, 75 at~ 18). The parties, however, dispute the number of "shifts"3
that Macioce typically was scheduled to work in an average workweek prior to her removal from
the automatic scheduling process. The EEOC contends Macioce generally worked on five days
in a work week. (ECF Nos. 59 at 3; 60, at~ 17). Bob Evans contends that Macioce typically
worked on four days in a week, based not on its own work records but rather the testimony of
Moreau that his "understanding" was that on a weekly basis she worked a "approximately four
days a week." (ECF Nos. 72, at~ 17, 19; 64-3 [Moreau Dep. at 56-57]). Review of the actual
work records that Bob Evans produced in discovery reveals that in the 49 workweek period
beginning from Thursday, August 8, 2013 through Wednesday, July 16, 2014, Macioce was
scheduled for 4 shifts a week in 9 of those weeks, was scheduled for 6 shifts a week in 2 of those
weeks, and was scheduled for 5 shifts a week in 38 of those workweeks. (ECF No. 58-9). Thus,
she was far more often scheduled for 5 shifts a week and in that 49 week period she was
scheduled to work shifts on average 4.86 days per week.
In July of 2014, Macioce was pregnant with her second child with a due date in
September 2014. (ECF Nos. 60, 72,
2). Macioce testified that she was available for work
and intended to work up until she gave birth to her second child, (ECF Nos. 60 at
18; 64-1 at
38), which ultimately occurred on September 12, 2014. (ECF No. 64-1 at 8). In mid-July of
2014, just before Macioce was scheduled to be on vacation from July 21 through July 29, 2014,
(ECF No. 58-2 at 8 [Macioce Dep. at 98]), Moreau and Macioce had a conversation about her
future work schedule. Because Moreau believed Macioce' s pregnancy due date was "imminent"
Bob Evans questions the EEOC using the term "shift" in opposition to Bob Evan's motion for summary judgment
without precisely defining the term, (ECF No. 76 at 6), despite the reality that the testimony by Bob Evans'
Assistant General Manager Virginia Giaquinto and its General Manager Moreau as well as Bob Evans' own
statements of fact, briefs and arguments refer similarly and repeatedly to the term "shift" without providing a
definition. The Court takes the term "shift" simply to mean the period of work on a given workday.
and that delivery of her child "could happen any day," Moreau asked Macioce when she planned
to take a leave of absence due to her pregnancy. (ECF No. 72 at 9-10 [Bob Evans' Separate
Concise Statement of Undisputed Material Facts in response to EEOC's motion for summary
19, 20, 22, 23]). Macioce did not state her due date to Moreau at this time, did
not request a leave of absence, (ECF No. 72, Bob Evans' Separate Concise Statement of
Undisputed Facts in response to EEOC's motion for summary judgment,
if 23), and did not
request that Moreau change or eliminate her availability in the automated scheduling system.
(ECF No. 58-3; 64-3 at 19 [Moreau Dep. at 55]). 4 Macioce indicated to Moreau that she would
work until she had the baby. (Macioce Dep. at 100-101, 58-2 at 11; ECF No. 75 at if 26).
The parties also dispute certain aspects of the conversation between Macioce and Moreau
that took place in mid-July, 2014 regarding scheduling.
Macioce testified that Moreau
approached her and asked her when she was going to take a leave of absence, and when she
responded that she was going to work until she had the baby, Moreau asked her if she could
change her availability in the system.
When she asked him why he wanted her to do this,
Moreau responded that he didn't "want to get screwed over if [she had] the baby." (ECF No. 641 at 20-21 [Macioce Dep. at 101; Moreau Dep. At 100-101 ]). Moreau then again asked her to
change her own availability. Macioce told him no, told him she was planning on working until
she had the baby, and then walked away. (ECF No. 64-1 at 21 [Macioce Dep. at 101]). As she
was waiting on tables and despite her indication that she did not want a change in her
The EEOC asserts in its Concise Statement of Facts at~ 13, (ECF No. 60), that "Macioce did not request Moreau
to change her availability to 'zero."' This fact is supported by citation to Moreau's testimony providing in response
to the question "[d]id Macioce request that you change her availability in the automated scheduling system," the
unequivocal response "[s]he did not." (Moreau Dep. at 55). If she did not ask for ill1Y change, then necessarily she
did not ask for a change to zero. Bob Evans indicates that it "disputes" this fact. (ECF No. 72 at~ 13 ). Suffice it to
say that if an attempted dispute is not properly supported by the evidence viewed in the light most favorable to the
non-moving party it is inadequate to create a genuine issue of material fact. In its papers, Bob Evans indicates it
disputes certain facts when it really just contests their legal import-which it was free to do throughout its briefing
and at oral argument (ECF No. 80), and which arguments the Court has considered.
availability, Moreau nevertheless told her: "I'm just taking you off the schedule, but you're still
going to get your hours." (ECF No. 64-1 at 21 [Macioce Dep. at 101]).
Moreau could not recall all of what was said in the conversation with Macioce, (ECF No.
64-3 [Moreau Dep. at 49, 50, 55, 56]), but disputed that Macioce ever objected when he told her
that he was taking her off of the automatic scheduling. (ECF No. 72, Bob Evans' Separate
Concise Statement of Undisputed Facts in Response to EEOC's Motion for Summary Judgment, 5
29). According to Moreau, at that time, Macioce told him that she was pregnant but did not tell
him her due date, (ECF No. 64-3 at 17, 19 [Moreau Dep. at 49, 55]), and Moreau told Macioce
that he was going to adjust the automatic scheduling system and set her availability to "zero" so
that Macioce would not continue to be automatically scheduled, (ECF Nos. 72, Bob Evans'
Separate Concise Statement of Undisputed Facts in response to EEOC's Motion for Summary
25; 58-3 at 14, 17 [Moreau Dep. at 50, 55]), but that he would continue to give her
shifts, and that she needed to continue to call-in to indicate that she was still available to work.
(ECF No. 64-3 at 17-18, 19 [Moreau Dep. at 49-50, 55]). Moreau testified that he did not recall
what Macioce said in response to his final determination that he would remove her availability
for automatic scheduling in the automated system, but he did specifically recall that she did not
object. (ECF No. 64-3 at 19 [Moreau Dep. at 55]). 6
In response to the EEOC's Concise Statement of Material Facts, Bob Evans provided its position as to what it
disputed and also included and thereafter in the same document added a section entitled its "Separate Concise
Statement of Undisputed Facts." (ECF No. 72 at 6). For clarity, the Court identifies the "Separate Concise
Testimony that one does not recall certain events is not equivalent to testimony that it did not happen. Broad
Music, Inc. v. Allis, 667 F. Supp. 356, 358 n.2 (S.D. Miss. 1986) ("An affiant's failure to remember an event is not a
specific denial that the event occurred for purposes of summary judgment."); Hideout Records & Distributors v. El
Jay Dee, Inc., 601 F. Supp. 1048, 1053 (D. Del. 1984) ("First, Mrs. Nelkin's statement that she cannot remember
hearing the songs played does not place in dispute the statements of Hood and Verna that the songs were in fact
played since an affiant's failure to remember an event is not a specific denial that the event occurred. See, e.g.,
Lemelson v. The Bendix Corp., et al., C.A. No. 82-308, Slip Op. at 3, fn. 2 (D. Del., January 23, 1984)."). A failure
to recall an event without a denial that it happened coupled with affirmative evidence that the event happened, is
insufficient to create an issue of material fact preventing summary judgment. Bixler v. Cent. Pennsylvania
Moreau, as he said he would, took Macioce out of the automated scheduling system.
(ECF No. 72, Bob Evans' Separate Concise Statement of Undisputed Facts in Response to
EEOC's Motion for Summary Judgment,
26). He indicated that he did so because she was
pregnant, he believed her need for leave was imminent, 7 and he wanted to ensure that the
restaurant's staffing needs were met. (ECF Nos. 58-3 at 18 [Moreau Dep. at 74]; ECF No. 72,
Bob Evans' Separate Concise Statement of Undisputed Facts in Response to EEOC's Motion for
Summary Judgment,~ 26). Moreau's belief that Macioce's due date was imminent was based on
the fact that she was pregnant and that he had heard "hearsay" from other employees that "she
was close." (Moreau Dep. at 54). Moreau expected Macioce to keep him apprised if she wished
to continue to work and was able to work.
(ECF No. 72, Bob Evans' Separate Concise
Statement of Undisputed Facts in Response to EEOC's Motion for Summary Judgment,~ 28). 8
Teamsters Health & Welfare Fund, 12 F.3d 1292, 1301-02 (3d Cir. 1993); see also Tinder v. Pinkerton Security,
305 F.3d 728, 735-36 (7th Cir.2002) (finding that employee failed to create a genuine issue of fact for trial where
employee asserted in an affidavit that she "[did] not recall seeing or reviewing the Arbitration Program brochure"
and employer asserted to the contrary); cf Kirleis v. Dickie. McCamey & Chilcote, P.C., 560 F.3d 156, 162 (3d Cir.
Mar. 24, 2009) (distinguishing between allegations that plaintiff "was never provided with a copy" of the relevant
documents and allegations that the plaintiff "merely could not 'recall seeing or reviewing' them" and concluding
that the plaintiffs evidence that she never received the documents, as opposed to being unable to recall seeing them,
was sufficient to create a genuine issue of material fact); Wagner v. Unison Admin. Servs., LLC, Civ. Act. No. 071008, 2009 WL 891870, at *8 (W.D. Pa. Mar. 31, 2009) (Plaintiff did not create a genuine issue of fact where
"[ d]uring his deposition, Plaintiff testified that he did not rec al 1 receiving the entire application, but significantly did
not deny that he received the entire application."). Nevertheless, testimony involving a failure to recall when
viewed in the light most favorable to the non-moving party may be sufficiently equivocal when considered in
context in a particular case such that a court properly views the stated failure to "recall" as equivalent to a denial that
the event happened for summary judgment purposes.
Moreau's testimony refers vaguely to a "policy" he had, such that when someone told him that they would be
taking time off "imminently" that he would not have a schedule "generated by the computer for the foreseeable
future until they were coming back." (ECF No. 58-3 at 16 [Moreau Dep. at 54]). Moreau, however, could not recall
any occasion, other than the one at issue here involving Macioce, when he had changed another employee to "zero"
availability in the automatic scheduling system because of an "imminent event that was going to happen" or where
no leave of absence had first been requested by the employee. (ECF No. 64-3 at 26 [Moreau Dep. at 75]).
The EEOC notes a dispute regarding the ''screwed over" comment citing only to Bob Evans' Answer to the
Complaint. (ECF No. 59 at 3 n. 5 (citing ECF No. 49 at~ 14)). As the EEOC does not contend in its present motion
that the comment is undisputed, the Court accepts for purposes of the EEOC's motion the characterization of this
fact as being adequately disputed by Bob Evans at this juncture. Other than the "screwed over" statement, Macioce
does not contend that any derogatory comments were made regarding her pregnancy. (Macioce Depo at 107).
Based on the parties' disputed evidence, for purposes of the EEOC's motion the Court will not consider as an
After the mid-July 2014 conversation, Macioce went on her previously scheduled
vacation, (ECF No. 58-2 at 8 [Macioce Dep. at 98]), and returned to a change in the way she was
to be scheduled for shifts at Bob Evans. The evidence regarding Macioce's work schedule after
she returned from vacation is somewhat less certain. Certain exhibits produced by Bob Evans
and attached to the EEOC's filings are in rather miniscule print. At times the parties refer to
shifts being handwritten onto the schedule and shifts being penciled in, which the Court takes to
be functionally the same thing. Additionally, copies of the actual schedules on which Macioce
was penciled in or handwritten in are unavailable because they are not retained, (ECF No. 64-3 at
23 [Moreau Dep. at 61 ]), but the computer generated schedules and "raw punch" records of
shifts actually worked are. See, e.g., (ECF Nos. 58-7; 70-12; 70-22). The Court has therefore
plowed through these filings to assess just what the record establishes in these regards.
On or about August 1, 2014, Moreau changed Macioce' s availability in the scheduling
system to "zero" effective for shifts beginning the week of August 7, 2014. (ECF Nos. 60, 72, at
10, 15; 72,
19). After removing her from the automatic scheduling, Moreau only added her
onto the schedule by handwriting (or penciling) her in for shifts for the first week that she was no
longer automatically scheduled for shifts, but not for any other weeks. (ECF No. 64-3 at 22, 23
[Moreau Dep. at 67, 60]). Moreau did not speak with Macioce regarding these shifts, and instead
Giaquinto, also responsible for scheduling duties, informed Macioce when she was put on the
schedule. (ECF No. 64-3 at 22, 25 [Moreau Dep. at 60, 73]).
To obtain shifts after Moreau removed her from the automatic scheduling, Macioce spoke
with Giaquinto, shift leader Heather Hathaway, and another manager, Kathy Schneider, but did
undisputed fact Macioce's stated objection to Moreau that her availability not be changed to zero and the contention
by Macioce that Moreau had indicated he did not want to be "screwed over" in scheduling by her pregnancy and
childbirth, but it may consider them in regard to Bob Evans' motion.
not discuss additional shifts with Moreau. (ECF No. 64-1 [Macioce Dep. at 102]). Macioce told
Giaquinto that Moreau had taken her off of the schedule and Giaquinto used Macioce to
supplement the schedules she was working on and to fill in the gaps in the schedule for that
(ECF No. 70-8 at 10-11, 12). Giaquinto understood that Macioce was not
pleased at being taken off of the automated schedule. (ECF No. 70-8 at 11, 12 [Giaquinto Dep.
at 26, 32]). Giaquinto, however, was not instructed by Moreau to give Macioce any number of
work hours in the wake of Moreau ''zeroing" out Macioce' s availability in the automated system.
(ECF No. 70-8 at 10, 12, 13). Additionally, Macioce could not simply be scheduled for the
number of shifts or days she usually worked prior to being removed from the automated
scheduling or for any work when she was not needed, but could only be scheduled if there was a
"hole" in the automatically generated schedule or an additional need for a particular shift. (ECF
Nos. 58-8 at 5-6; 70-8 at 12, 13).
Macioce asked for shifts from Giaquinto at least three times in person, (ECF No. 72, Bob
Evans' Separate Concise Statement of Undisputed Facts in Response to EEOC's Motion for
Summary Judgment, ~ 31 ), 9 and sat down with Giaquinto when Giaquinto was going over the
schedule. Heather Hathaway was able to find shifts for Macioce to work on Saturday August
16th and Sunday August 17th. (ECF No. 58-2 at 5 [Macioce Dep. at 126]). When Macioce called
in and spoke with Kathy Schneider regarding being added to the schedule, Macioce was told no
one had called off for that morning. (ECF No. 58-2 at 14 [Macioce Dep. at 125]).
Bob Evans indicates that Macioce asked Giaquinto for shifts while Macioce actually was working a shift and
appears to imply that Macioce's request somehow was not a legitimate request to be added to the schedule because
she was already working at that same time. See, e.g. (ECF Nos. 72, Bob Evans' Separate Concise Statement of
Undisputed Facts in Response to EEOC's Motion for Summary Judgment, at ~ 31; 65 at 5; 69 at 5). The only
reasonable takeaway from this is that Macioce indeed sought to be added to the schedule, as her General Manager
made the decision to remove her from the automated system, had not added her to the schedule for the same amount
of shifts per week she ordinarily would work as he had not added her at all beyond the first effective week of her
removal, and instead left her to find replacement shift work-which was not always available. Moreover, it
indicates (consistent with Moreau's testimony) that he expected Macioce to call-in for shifts to show that she was
still capable of working despite her pregnancy and presumably had not gone into labor.
Bob Evans produced in discovery a document displaying shifts that were auto-scheduled
by the scheduling system, shifts manually added in the system and shifts manually deleted in the
system for the relevant time period. (ECF No. 58-7; see also ECF No. 70-22). After the midJuly conversation, in addition to Moreau eliminating Macioce's availability in the automated
system so that she would no longer be automatically scheduled for shifts effective August 7,
2014, on three separate occasions he deleted shifts for which Macioce previously had been
automatically scheduled to work, amounting to a total of twelve out of fifteen such shifts being
actively deleted from the schedule. (ECF No. 58-7 at 4). Specifically, on July 18, 2014, Moreau
deleted in the scheduling system shifts that had been auto-scheduled for Macioce to work on July
31, 2014 and August 1, 2014. (ECF No. 70-1,
6, Exhibit Fat 3). Then, on July 27, 2014,
Moreau deleted shifts that had been auto-scheduled for Macioce to work on August 7, 8, 10, 11
and 12, 2014.
Id. Finally, on August 1, 2014, Moreau deleted shifts that had been auto-
scheduled for Macioce to work on August 15, 17, 18, 19, and 20.
Id. Thus, Moreau removed
Macioce from the automated schedule system for shifts to be worked by her on July 31, 2014 and
on August 1, 7, 8, 10, 11, 12, 15, 17, 18, 19 and 20, 2014. Macioce, however, worked shifts
previously automatically scheduled for August 3, 4, and 5, 2014. (ECF Nos. 60, at ii 20).
Ultimately, Moreau penciled Macioce onto the schedule for shifts she worked on August
9 and 10, 2014, and another manager penciled her onto the schedule for August 22, 2014. (ECF
Nos. 72, at
19; 74-4 at 14-15 [McFarland Deel., at
9 & Ex 5]). Beginning on August 13,
2014, Assistant Manager Giaquinto added Macioce to the schedule.
(ECF No. 58-7 at 4).
Macioce was manually added to the schedule for shifts on August 16, 17, and 18. (ECF Nos. 72,
iJ 19; 74-4 at 14-15 [McFarland Deel., at ii 9 & Ex 5]). Thus, from the workweek beginning
on August 7, 2014 through September 12, 2014, when Macioce delivered her baby, Macioce was
scheduled for six shifts. (ECF No. 72, at ~ 20). Bob Evans did not schedule Macioce for any
work after August 22, 2014. Macioce did not "call-in" regarding work after August 22, 2014,
(Macioce Dep. at 130), but she never indicated to Bob Evans that she was unable to or did not
want to work, and in the wake of being removed from the automatic schedule she affirmatively
indicated that she desired shifts via her prior requests for shifts from the assistant managers, by
putting her name and phone number on shift cards, and by indicating to co-workers her
availability via "facebook" messages. (ECF Nos. 70-2 at 69-71; 70-4, at~~ 5-6 [Macioce Deel.]).
The document described as Macioce's "raw punches," meaning shifts Macioce actually
worked, reveals that after Macioce returned from her July 2014 vacation, she ultimately was
scheduled for and worked shifts as follows:
For the workweek beginning July 31, 2014, she was scheduled for and worked three
shifts-one on August yct, 4th and 5th.
For the workweek beginning August 7, 2014, she was added to the schedule and
worked two shifts-one on August 9th and 1oth.
For the workweek beginning August 14, 2014, she was added to the schedule for
three shifts, but worked only the shifts on August 17th and 18th, 2017. 10
For the workweek beginning August 21, 2014, she was added to the schedule and
worked one shift on August 22nct.
For the workweeks beginning August 29, September 4, and September 11, 2014, she
was not added to the schedule for any shifts.
(ECF No. 70-12 at 3).
After having her baby, Macioce decided not to return to work at Bob Evans. (Macioce
Depo at 48); (ECF No. 72, Bob Evans' Separate Concise Statement of Undisputed Facts in
Response to EEOC's Motion for Summary
43). Subsequently, Moreau ceased what
he referred to as his "practice" of telling a person taking a leave of absence that he would change
The evidence establishes that Macioce was given a shift for the evening of August 16, 2014, but due to a
miscommunication she was unable to work that scheduled shift. There is no evidence to show any discrimination in
their availability in the system to zero. (Moreau Dep. at 75). Moreau resigned employment with
Bob Evans on October 27, 2016. (ECF No. 74-4 at ii 10).
Bob Evans' Anti-Discrimination Policy
Bob Evans' February 2013 employee handbook, m its section labelled "Equal
Employment Opportunity Policy," states:
Bob Evans Farms, LLC offers equal employment opportunity to all job applicants
and gives all employees equal consideration in our employment practices. Bob
Evans abides by all local, state, and federal laws regarding equal employment
opportunity. Bob Evans will . . . administer all personnel actions such as
compensation, benefits, promotions, transfers, and all other aspects of
employment in a consistent and non-discriminating manner.
If you believe that you have been subject to conduct which violates this policy, or
if you have questions concerning this policy, please contact any member of the
management team, the Human Resources Department, or use the Open Door
(ECF No. 58-10 at 3).
The "Open Door Policy" in the 2013 Handbook provides that it
encourages employees to raise concerns and address situations with their supervisor or a member
of human resources, including decisions the employee thinks are "unfair." (ECF No. 58-10 at 3).
The Bob Evans May 2014 employee handbook includes the virtually identical "Equal
Employment Policy" and "Open Door Policy," (ECF No. 64-4 at 6), but it also includes a section
labelled as its "Harassment & Discrimination Policy," that further provides:
Harassment, discrimination, or retaliation of any kind toward fellow employees,
guests, or business affiliates which is based on race, color, religion, genetic
information, gender, national origin, age, disability, citizenship, military status,
ancestry, sexual orientation, or any other protected characteristic is prohibited.
If you feel you are the subject of harassment, discrimination, or retaliation, please
report it to your supervisor, the Human Resources Department or use the Open
Door Policy. Where investigation confirms the allegation, prompt disciplinary
action will be taken, up to and including termination of the offending
(ECF No. 64-4 at 5; ECF No. 72, at ~ 23). Prohibited discrimination on the specific basis of
pregnancy is not mentioned in any of the policy provisions.
Moreau was responsible for ensuring that employees at the West Mifflin Bob Evans were
aware of company policies and procedures, which included him going over the open-door, antiharassment and anti-discrimination policies with them. (ECF No. 58-3 at 6-7 [Moreau Dep. at
35-36]). He was required to acknowledge receipt of the Bob Evans Employee Handbook, (ECF
No. 64-3 at 5-6 [Moreau Dep. at 12, 23]), but did not recall any video training or anyone else
coming to the restaurant to do in-person staff training. (ECF No. 58-3 at 8 [Moreau Dep. at 37]).
Macioce could not recall taking anti-discrimination policy training or that Bob Evans had antidiscrimination and open door policies, yet she acknowledged receipt and review of the May 2014
Handbook by her signature dated April 30, 2014. (ECF Nos. 64-1 at 18; 64-4 at 8; 70-4,
As to its motion for summary judgment on liability, Bob Evans asserts that the EEOC
cannot raise an inference of discriminatory motive under the familiar burden-shifting framework
for indirect evidence cases and also cannot establish the existence of an adverse employment
action. In no uncertain terms, Bob Evans insists that its General Manager Moreau removed
Macioce from the automated employee scheduling system not because of Macioce's pregnancy,
but "because he believed her due date was imminent and, consequently, her attendance in the
near future was unpredictable." (ECF No. 65 at 1). Bob Evans further states that "the sole reason
Moreau took Macioce off the schedule was due to the unpredictability of her attendance," (ECF
No. 65 at 13), and her '"imminent', unpredictable leave." (ECF No. 65 at 14). Bob Evans also
argues that Moreau made the decision to remove Macioce from the automated scheduling system
"for the predictability of the schedule" to "ensure the restaurant's staffing needs." (ECF No. 65
In contrast, the EEOC contends that there is no genuine issue of fact on this point, and
that the undisputed direct evidence, as further confirmed by the position of Bob Evans in its
briefing, unequivocally establishes as a matter of law intentional discrimination against Macioce
based on her pregnancy.
The Pregnancy Discrimination Act ("PDA")
Title VII prohibits discrimination in employment "because of sex." 42 U.S.C. § 2000e2(a). Specifically,§ 2000e-2(a) provides:
(a) Employer practices
It shall be an unlawful employment practice for an employer(1) to fail or refuse to hire or to discharge any individual, or otherwise to
discriminate against any individual with respect to his compensation,
terms, conditions, or privileges of employment, because of such
individual's race, color, religion, sex, or national origin; or
(2) to limit, segregate, or classify his employees or applicants for
employment in any way which would deprive or tend to deprive any
individual of employment opportunities or otherwise adversely affect his
status as an employee, because of such individual's race, color, religion,
sex, or national origin.
42 U.S.C. § 2000e-2(a).
The PDA, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e(k), was passed by Congress in response to the Supreme
Court's decision in General Electric Co. v. Gilbert, 429 U.S. 125 (1976), in which the Court had
held that discrimination "because of pregnancy" was not prohibited discrimination "because of
sex" under Title VII. "The PDA specifies that sex discrimination includes discrimination on the
basis of pregnancy." California Fed Sav. & Loan Ass'n v. Guerra, 479 U.S. 272, 277 (1987).
The United States Supreme Court explained in Guerra that:
[r]ather than limiting existing Title VII principles and objectives, the PDA
extends them to cover pregnancy. As Senator Williams, a sponsor of the Act,
stated: "The entire thrust ... behind this legislation is to guarantee women the
basic right to p"articipate fully and equally in the workforce, without denying them
the fundamental right to full participation in family life." 123 Cong. Rec. 29658
Guerra, 479 U.S. at 288-89. Specifically, Congress amended Title VII to add a definition of the
term "because of sex." Section 2000e(k) thus provides:
§ 2000e. Definitions
For the purposes of this subchapter--
(k) The terms "because of sex" or "on the basis of sex" include, but are not
limited to, because of or on the basis ofpregnancv. childbirth, or related medical
conditions; and women affected by pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical
conditions shall be treated the same for all employment-related purposes,
including receipt of benefits under fringe benefit programs, as other persons not
so affected but similar in their ability or inability to work, and nothing in section
2000e-2(h) of this title shall be interpreted to permit otherwise ....
42 U.S.C. § 2000e(k) (emphasis added).
As Johnson Controls explains, passage of the PDA established that "women as capable of
doing their jobs as their male counterparts may not be forced to choose between having a child
and having a job." 499 U.S. at 204.
"The [PDA] has now made clear that, for all Title VII
purposes, discrimination based on a woman's pregnancy is, on its face, discrimination because of
her sex." 499 U.S. at 199. Therefore, the PDA outlaws discrimination against women because
of or on the basis of pregnancy, childbirth or related conditions with respect to compensation,
terms, conditions or privileges of employment. 42 U.S.C. § 2000e-2(a).
One specific congressional goal in passage of the PDA was to make it unlawful to force
pregnant woman who were not unable to work to take leave that they had not requested.
Outmoded notions and paternalistic protections regarding pregnancy were to give way to equal
treatment for women. For example, the Senate Report noted:
perhaps the most important effect of the PDA is to prohibit employer policies
which forced women who became pregnant to stop working regardless of their
ability to continue. . . . For, as the history of sex discrimination shows, such
policies have long-term effects upon the careers of women and account in large
part for the fact that women remain in low-paying, dead-end jobs.
S. Rep. No. 331, 95th Cong. 2d Sess. 6 (1978). 11
The history and effect of such policies were addressed in statements by House and
Senate members as well as in testimony before the Committees considering the
legislation. These statements emphasized the change in the American workforce
to include a large percentage of women and the economic hardship faced by these
women and their families when discrimination on the basis of pregnancy and
related medical conditions occurs. By enacting the PDA, Congress rejected the
outdated notions upon which many "protective" laws and policies were based,
policies which often resulted "from attitudes about pregnancy and the role of
women who become pregnant which are inconsistent with the full participation of
women in our economic system," and which perpetuated women's second class
status in the workplace. As the Supreme Court has stated, "[t]he reports, debates
and hearings make abundantly clear that Congress intended the PDA to provide
relief for working women and to end discrimination against pregnant workers."
Carney v. Martin Luther Home, Inc., 824 F.2d 643, 646-47 (8th Cir. 1987) (quoting Guerra, 479
U.S. at 285-286) (internal citations omitted).
The protections of the PDA apply regardless of the stage of pregnancy. For example,
[e]mployment late in pregnancy often imposes risks on the unborn child, but
Congress indicated that the employer may take into account only the woman's
ability to get her job done. With the PDA, Congress made clear that the decision
to become pregnant or to work while being either pregnant or capable of
becoming pregnant was reserved for each individual woman to make for herself.
11 The Supreme Court in Nevada Dept. of Human Resources v. Hibbs, 538 U.S. 721 (2003), similarly recognized
this principle in regard to the passage of the Family Medical Leave Act of 1993 ("FMLA"), 29 U.S.C. § 2601 et
Historically, denial or curtailment of women's employment opportunities has been traceable
directly to the pervasive presumption that women are mothers first, and workers second.
Stereotypes about women's domestic roles ... created a self-fulfilling cycle of discrimination that
forced women to continue to assume the role of primary family caregiver, and fostered employers'
stereotypical views about women's commitment to work and their value as employees. Those
perceptions, in tum, Congress reasoned, lead to subtle discrimination that may be difficult to
detect on a case-by-case basis.
538 U.S. at 736 (internal quotations and citations omitted).
Int'l Union, United Auto., Aerospace & Agr. Implement Workers ofAm., UAW v. Johnson
Controls, Inc., 499 U.S. 187, 205-06, 111 S. Ct. 1196, 1207, 113 L. Ed. 2d 158 (1991) (internal
citations omitted) (emphasis added).
The Supreme Court clarified in Young v. United Parcel Service, Inc., 135 S.Ct. 1338,
1352 (2015), that the first clause of the PDA, § 2000e(k), that is the language providing "[t}he
terms "because of sex" or "on the basis of sex" include, but are not limited to, because of or on
the basis of pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions," reflects Congressional
disagreement with the reasoning of Gilbert by including pregnancy discrimination within the
definition of discrimination "because of sex" or "on the basis of sex." Young, 135 S.Ct. at 1352.
The second clause, providing "and women affected by pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical
conditions shall be treated the same for all employment-related purposes, including receipt of
benefits under fringe benefit programs, as other persons not so affected but similar in their
ability or inability to work, and nothing in section 2000e-2(h) of this title shall be interpreted to
permit otherwise," is not simply a further definition of sex discrimination to include pregnancy
discrimination, because that interpretation of the statute would violate the rule against
superfluidity. 135 S.Ct. at 1352. Rather, the second clause is directed at overturning Gilbert's
holding that an employer could treat pregnancy less favorably than diseases or disabilities that
resulted in a similar inability to work, such as where an employer denies a requested
accommodation or benefits that are extended to others. 135 S.Ct. at 1353. The EEOC does not
proceed here under the second clause as Macioce had not requested any accommodation or
challenged the provision of benefits. The EEOC proceeds instead under the first clause of the
With the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1991, a plaintiff need only show that the
prohibited consideration was "a reason" for the employer's action challenged under Title VII:
[a]n unlawful employment practice is established when an individual
demonstrates that pregnancy or a pregnancy-related condition "was a motivating
factor for any employment practice, even though other factors also motivated the
practice." 42 U.S.C. § 2000e-2(m). See Robinson v. Southeastern Pa. Transp.
Auth., 982 F.2d 892, 899 & n. 8 (3d Cir.1993) (noting the 1991 Civil Rights Act
"overrul[ ed] that portion of Price Waterhouse that permitted an employer to avoid
liability if it could demonstrate that it would have taken the same action in the
absence of discriminatory motive").
Deneen v. Northwest Airlines, Inc., 132 F.3d 431, 435-36 (8th Cir. 1998); see also Doe v.
C.A.R.S. Prat. Plus, Inc., 527 F.3d 358, 364 (3d Cir.), order clarified, 543 F.3d 178 (3d Cir.
2008) ("[T]he prohibition [against pregnancy discrimination] is breached 'whenever an
employee's pregnancy [or related medical condition] is a motivating factor for the employer's
adverse employment decision. '"). 12
Direct v. Indirect Evidence
Disparate treatment based on the prohibited consideration of a woman's pregnancy "is
proven by either using direct evidence of intent to discriminate or using indirect evidence from
which a court could infer intent to discriminate." C.A.R.S., 527 F.3d at 364.
The parties are
fully entrenched in opposing views as to whether this pregnancy discrimination case should be
analyzed as a direct evidence case, as the EEOC urges, or as an indirect evidence case employing
the familiar burden-shifting framework of McDonnell Douglas Corp. v. Green, 411 U.S. 792,
802, 93 S.Ct. 1817, 36 L.Ed.2d 668 (1973), as Bob Evans insists. Under either analysis, the
A point of emphasis is in order. Bob Evans repeatedly points in its briefing to an assertion by Moreau that
Macioce did not object when he told her he was removing her availability in the automated scheduling system. See,
e.g., (ECF No. 65 at 5). Putting aside for the moment that the Assistant General Manager Giaquinto testified that
she understood that Macioce was upset by the tum of events in scheduling, and viewing the evidence in the light
most favorable to Bob Evans in considering the EEOC's motion, such that the Court also ignores Macioce's
testimony that she repeatedly declined Moreau's request that she remove her own availability in the scheduling
system, nowhere does the law require that the -victim of unlawful discrimination prove that they protested that
discrimination as an element of their Title VII discrimination claim. Title VII admits of no defense of "consent" to
otherwise unlawful pregnancy discrimination.
material record evidence regarding the mid-July 2014 conversation and its wake is the same.
Several weeks before Macioce went into childbirth and without any request by her for Moreau to
do it, Moreau changed her availability in the scheduling system from a status that would
automatically generate a schedule with her assigned work to a status that would not
automatically schedule her for any work and then expected Macioce to call-in that she still was
available to work to potentially obtain shifts. The undisputed evidence then establishes that any
call-in by Macioce for work shifts could only be granted if shifts were available at that time
("holes"), after the automatic scheduling system already had generated a schedule without
Macioce assigned to any work. And that same record conclusively demonstrates that when this
happened, Macioce's level of work materially declined.
In arguing for summary judgment in its favor on liability, the EEOC analyzes this case
only as one involving direct evidence. Accordingly, if the Court determines it is an indirect
evidence case, it will deny the EEOC's motion as to liability. Conversely, Bob Evans does not
request summary judgment in its favor nor contend that it is entitled to it on liability regarding
the element of intent if this is a direct evidence case. Bob Evans does, however, contend that the
EEOC cannot show the existence of an adverse employment action, regardless of the evidentiary
framework by which the case proceeds. Thus, if the Court determines this is a direct evidence
case, Bob Evans' motion on liability will be denied unless Bob Evans can show the lack of an
adverse employment action as a matter of law. The additional matters on which Bob Evans and
the EEOC base their summary judgment motions, discussed below, are aimed at damages and
injunctive relief and apply whether or not this is an indirect or direct evidence case.
Direct evidence is evidence that would prove the prohibited intent without resort to an
inference or presumption.
Torre v. Casio, Inc., 42 F .3d 825, 829 (3d Cir. 1994). "When
determining whether proffered evidence constitutes direct evidence of discrimination, [the court]
consider[ s] whether the evidence, if believed, compels the conclusion that [discriminatory]
animus played a part in the challenged decision." Weigel v. Baptist Hosp. of E. Tennessee, 302
F.3d 367, 383 (6th Cir. 2002).
In order to constitute direct evidence, "the evidence must
demonstrate that the 'decision makers placed substantial negative reliance on an illegitimate
criterion in reaching their decision."' Anderson v. Consol. Rail Corp., 297 F.3d 242, 248 (3d Cir.
2002) (quoting Connors v. Chrysler Financial Corp., 160 F.3d 971, 976 (3d Cir. 1998)).
Statements made by the decision-maker related to the decision or decision-making
process at issue and reflecting the motive for that decision constitute direct evidence of motive.
Where statements are made either by a non-decision-maker, or are not related to the challenged
decision, those statements might be characterized as "stray remarks" and if such, are not direct
evidence of unlawful intent. Weightman v. BankofN.Y Mellon Corp., 772 F. Supp. 2d 693, 702
(W.D. Pa. 2011) ("Derogatory comments or stray remarks in the workplace that are unrelated to
employment decisions, even when uttered by decision-makers, do not constitute direct evidence
of discrimination.") Even if so-called stray remarks are not direct evidence, they do provide
background evidence and can support a finding of pretext and discriminatory motive. C.A.R.S.,
527 F.3d at 368.
If indirect evidence is used to prove discriminatory intent, the court employs:
the familiar McDonnell Douglas burden-shifting framework to analyze her Title
VII pregnancy discrimination claims. Under this analysis, the employee must first
establish a prima facie case. If the employee is able to present such a case, then
the burden shifts to the employer to provide a legitimate, nondiscriminatory
reason for its adverse employment decision. If the employer is able to do so, the
burden shifts back to the employee, who, to defeat a motion for summary
judgment, must show that the employer's articulated reason was a pretext for
C.A.R.S., 527 F.3d at 364 (internal citation omitted).
The Third Circuit in CA. R. S. addressed the contours of a prima facie case of pregnancy
discrimination in an indirect evidence case, instructing:
We have previously indicated that establishing a prima facie case of pregnancy
discrimination differs from establishing a prima facie case of gender
discrimination. In Geraci [v. Moody-Trottup, Int 'l, Inc., 82 F.3d 578, 580 (3d Cir.
1996)], we . . . modified the first element of a prima facie case of pregnancy
discrimination to require that an employer have actual knowledge of an
employees' pregnancy, reasoning that "pregnancy, of course, is different in that its
obviousness varies, both temporally and as between different affected
individuals." Id. at 581. Therefore, in a case alleging pregnancy discrimination, ..
. a plaintiff must adduce evidence that she was pregnant, and, that the employer
knew it. Id. at 580-81; accord Prebilich-Holland v. Gaylord Entm 't. Co., 297
F.3d 438, 444 (6th Cir.2002) .... The next two elements of the prima facie case
remain the same as those of gender discrimination. The plaintiff must be qualified
for her job and she must have suffered an adverse employment decision. The
fourth element requires that a plaintiff show some nexus between her pregnancy
and the adverse employment action.
C.A.R.S., 527 F.3d at 365.
Accordingly, if a plaintiff does not have direct evidence of discrimination, the "nexus"
must be established indirectly through evidence that raises an inference of discriminatory intent.
527 F.3d at 366, 370. On the other hand, "[w]hen direct evidence is offered to prove that an
employer discriminated, the shifting-burden analysis of McDonnell Douglas Corp. v. Green, 411
U.S. 792, 93 S.Ct. 1817, 36 L.Ed.2d 668 (1973) ... , is inapplicable and the case proceeds as an
ordinary civil suit." Torre, 42 F.3d at 829 (citing Trans World Airlines, Inc. v. Thurston, 469
U.S. 111, 121 (1985), and Gavalik v. Continental Can Co., 812 F.2d 834, 853 (3d Cir.1987)).
The Matter of Unlawful Animus
Bob Evans contends that the EEOC must have evidence of discriminatory bias for this
case to be analyzed as one involving direct evidence, (ECF No. 76 at 3), in essence requiring an
ill-will type of motive. The case law at times refers to discriminatory "animus," as Bob Evans
suggests, (ECF No. 76 at 3) (citing Mock v. Univ.
Pittsburgh at Johnstown, Civ. Act. No.
3:04-314, 2007 WL 2253602, at *9 (W.D. Pa. Aug. 3, 2007)); see also Weigel, 302 F.3d at 383,
and although animus may refer to hostility, negative feeling or "ill will," it also simply may
mean "intention." BLACK'S LAW DICTIONARY 87 (6th Ed. 1990).
To be sure, evidence of
discriminatory animus in the sense of ill will is relevant to the matter of discriminatory intent and
may be sufficient in some cases to establish discriminatory motive. The lack of such evidence,
however, will not defeat a discrimination claim.
The Carney court aptly explained how ill-will 1s not a sine qua non for pregnancy
[w]hile we have no doubt that the [defendant] harbors no ill motive against
plaintiff or other pregnant women, history reveals that women have consistently
been denied equal opportunities based on a professed concern for their well-being
and/or unfounded notions about their capabilities. The PDA was enacted to ensure
that pregnant women are judged on their actual ability and willingness to work,
and although the [defendant] had no mandatory leave policy, its decision as to the
plaintiff in effect forced her from the workplace at a time when she was willing
and able to perform her job successfully.
Carney, 824 F.2d at 649 (internal citations omitted); see also Deneen, 132 F.3d at 436.
An employee is no less discriminated against where hatred based on their protected class
status does not exist, but rather the decision-maker is motivated by perceived stereotypes and
even paternalistic notions regarding the protected class status-whether or not any negative
feeling or ill-will is harbored. This may be particularly so with pregnancy discrimination, and
Congress in passing the PDA expressed its intent to prohibit employment decisions based on
such well-meaning assumptions. With this in mind the Court turns to the record evidence of
On the matter of whether this case is a direct evidence or indirect evidence case,
consideration of Deane v. Pocono Med. Ctr, 142 F .3d 13 8 (3d Cir. 1998) (en bane), Deneen, 132
F.3d 431 (8th Cir. 1998), Martinson v. Kinney Shoe Corp., 104 F.3d 683 (4th Cir. 1997), Carney,
824 F.2d 643 (8 1h Cir. 1987), Gillin v. Federal Paper Bd. Co., Inc., 479 F.2d 97 (2d Cir. 1973),
Equal Employment Opportunity Comm 'n v. Corinth, Inc., 824 F. Supp. 1302, 1309 (N.D. Ind.
1993), and Peralta v. Chromium Plating & Polishing Corp., No. 1:99-CV-3996, 2000 WL
34633645 (E.D.N.Y. Sept. 15, 2000), demonstrates that the direct evidence analysis applies.
In Deane, involving discrimination based on perceived disability, the plaintiff produced
uncontroverted evidence in the form of a call from the employer's human resources vice
president indicating to the plaintiff that she was being terminated "because of her 'handicap."'
142 F.3d at 149. The en bane Court of Appeals held that this was "direct evidence that Deane
suffered an adverse employment action because of her employer's perception of her disability."
142 F.3d at 149.
Martinson v. Kinney Shoe Corp., 104 F.3d 683 (4th Cir. 1997), cited with approval by
Deane, 142 F.3d at 149, held that the record evidence, which showed the employer concededly
took adverse action against an employee on the basis of a statutorily protected class, required
nothing more to establish unlawful intent-that is, unlawful discrimination based on the
prohibited consideration. 104 F.3d at 686. Likewise, in Carney, the court of appeals reversed the
district court's decision to analyze the case under the indirect evidence burden-shifting
It determined that the plaintiff had presented direct evidence of pregnancy
discrimination where the employer admitted its decision was based on a condition that in tum
directly arose from pregnancy and the employer had placed the employee on leave without the
employee's request. 824 F.2d at 648.
The Second Circuit in Gillin considered as direct evidence of a discriminatory failure to
promote the uncontested statements by the individual tasked with making recommendations for a
position, including statements that the position was not suited to a woman, the position was a
"man's post," and that he did not consider the female applicant for the position.
Similarly, in Deneen the court held that when the employer required that the pregnant
employee have a note from a doctor to show that she could perform her job requirements, the
case properly was analyzed as a direct evidence case. That court explained: "[w]ithout any real
knowledge of a physical limitation, Mr. Holme stated that Mrs. Deneen could not return to work
from layoff status without a note from her physician because of her pregnancy-related
condition." Deneen, 132 F.3d at 436. The court rejected the employer's contention, similar to
Bob Evans' position here, that a "simple" reference to protected status without expression of
"bias" because of that status cannot constitute direct evidence of discrimination. In rebuffing
this approach, the court observed:
[t]his principle may apply with regard to the secretary's initial inquiry as to
whether Mrs. Deneen was pregnant. There is evidence, however, that NW A did
more than merely refer to Mrs. Deneen's pregnant status in this manner. Mr.
Holme's initial statement that she could not return to work was expressly based on
her pregnancy-related condition, a condition he only assumed to exist, and was
made before Mr. Holme knew of any pregnancy-related physical restrictions. He
did not simply refer to her pregnant status but made an adverse employment
decision on the basis of his discriminatory judgment about her abilities or her
propensity to use earned sick leave benefits. Additionally, the cases cited by
NWA in support of its contention that mere reference to a protected status is not
direct evidence of discrimination are distinguishable. For example, in Philipp v.
ANR Freight Sys., Inc., 61F.3d669, 674 (8th Cir.1995), the plaintiff claimed that
one decision maker's occasional reference to him as "the old man" amounted to
direct evidence of age discrimination when he was terminated as part of the
defendant's reduction in force. We held that these references were nothing more
than stray remarks in the workplace, because no evidence linked the remarks to
the challenged employment decision. Id. See also Geier [v. Medtonic, Inc., 99
F.3d 238, 242 (7th Cir. 1996)] ("To be probative of discrimination, isolated
comments must be contemporaneous with the discharge or causally related to the
discharge decision making process."). In the present case, Mr. Holme's remarks
contemporaneously and directly in connection with the adverse employment
decision. Her pregnancy-related condition was the reason [he] took her name off
the duty list and refused to permit her to return to work.
We conclude the district court correctly determined that Mrs. Deneen
presented direct evidence of discrimination.
132 F.3d at 436.
In Peralta, another direct evidence case, the employer required the plaintiff "to stop
working solely on the basis of her pregnancy and her earlier miscarriage." 2000 WL 34633645,
at *4. The defendants required the pregnant employee to provide a doctor's note to prove her
fitness to continue working (a frequent theme in pregnancy discrimination cases), and placed her
on unpaid medical leave when she did not produce a note. Likewise, in Equal Employment
Opportunity Comm 'n v. Corinth, Inc., 824 F. Supp. 1302, 1309 (N.D. Ind. 1993), where the
employer did not schedule the pregnant employee for further work because she was pregnant and
had gotten "too big" and could "fall down" in the restaurant at which she was a server, the case
was properly analyzed as a direct evidence case. There, the court stated that "[t]erminating a
pregnant employee, or forcing her to take leave, because of concern for her health or concern for
the employer's potential liability, are employment decisions based upon impermissible factors."
824 F. Supp. at 1302, 1308.
Weightman v. Bank of New York Mellon Corp., 772 F. Supp. 2d 693 (W.D. Pa. 2011), on
the other hand, rejected the plaintiffs attempt to proceed on a direct evidence theory in a
pregnancy discrimination case. The plaintiffs evidence included: the failure of the plaintiffs
supervisor to exhibit joy over the plaintiffs announced pregnancy; discipline for excessive
absenteeism and negative performance reviews occurring after she announced her pregnancy;
and a statement made outside of the decision-making process and after plaintiff had been issued
written warnings and counseled for her failure to improve that the plaintiff needed to make a
decision between being a mom and having a career.
772 F. Supp. 2d at 707. The record
evidence in TVeightman required the consideration of an inference of discrimination in the
decision-making, and therefore, was not direct evidence of discrimination.
C.A.R.S., involving unequal treatment of persons on leave, the evidence required an inference as
to the employer's intent and properly was considered as an indirect evidence case. There, the
plaintiff, who required leave after terminating a pregnancy, had evidence that other employees
who were temporarily disabled from work likewise failed to follow the same "required" call-off
procedure to continue their leave but were not terminated as was the plaintiff. 527 F.3d at 36667.
The record evidence here shows directly and without equivocation that the reason for
Moreau's decision to remove Macioce from automatic scheduling was because she was pregnant
and he believed her need for leave because of child birth (and nothing else) was imminent. Bob
Evans attempts to argue that the reason Moreau took Macioce off of the schedule was not really
because of unlawful consideration of pregnancy, but "because of Macioce's 'imminent',
unpredictable leave," (ECF No. 65 at 14), and "was based on Moreau's understanding that
Macioce was taking an imminent leave of absence with an unknown start date." (ECF No. 69 at
2). This argument simply doesn't hold water. Remember, Macioce had not requested leave for
some undisclosed reason, since she had not requested any leave at all. And, in spite of Macioce
personally telling Moreau she was pregnant, he had no discussion with her about her due date.
ECF No. 58-3 at 17. Bob Evans argues that the pregnancy discrimination claim fails because
"the sole reason Moreau took Macioce off the schedule was due to the unpredictability of her
attendance. Specifically, Moreau had notice that an event causing the need for leave with an
'imminent' but unknown date was approaching." (ECF No. 65 at 13). But the testimony of
Moreau is clear-his perception of Macioce-several weeks before Macioce actually delivered
her baby-was that Macioce's attendance was "unpredictable" based solely on her pregnancy-
and is just the type of stereotypical judgment that Congress legislated against by enacting the
PDA. Thus, the "unpredictability" here amounts to nothing more than a proxy for the only thing
theoretically generating it-Macioce's pregnancy. Moreau was plainly aware of Macioce's
pregnancy (she told him), and the only "event" of unpredictability was her then upcoming
"childbirth" as a result of her pregnancy.
The veil with which Bob Evans seeks to cover
knowing and intentional pregnancy discrimination is patently transparent.
A similar justification offered by the employer in Martinson was flatly rejected.
Martinson involved a plaintiff with epilepsy. The employer contended that it did not take the
adverse action based on a disability, but only acted based on a characteristic of epilepsyseizures experienced by plaintiff as a result of the disability. The Fourth Circuit observed:
[t]o fire for seizures is to fire for a disability ... Whether [the employer] fired
Martinson because he suffered from epilepsy or because of the 'specific
attributes' of his disease, i.e., his seizures, is immaterial-both are disabilities and
an employer may not use either to justify discharging an employee so long as that
employee is qualified for the job.
104 F.3d at 687.
The treatment of Macioce here fares no better than did that of the employee in Afartinson.
The distinction offered by Bob Evans isn't really a distinction, but is tantamount to a concession
of Title VII liability. To take action because of conditions precisely related to that pregnancy,
and arising from that pregnancy alone, is to take action because of pregnancy. Moreover, Bob
Evans' argument ignores that the considered "condition" involved here, childbirth, also is
specifically included in Title VII's definition of "because of sex." An employment action taken
based on the assumption that a woman will at some future date need leave (even unpredictably)
because she is pregnant, including for childbirth, directly demonstrates the discriminatory motive
for the action. See Wagner v. Dillard Dep't Stores, Inc., 17 F.App'x 141, 150 (4th Cir. 2001)
(determining matter was properly addressed as a direct evidence case and affirming denial of
motion for judgment as a matter of law and jury verdict in favor of plaintiff).
Bob Evans adds that "[a]t worst, the removal from the automated schedule was a result of
an honest mistake based upon Moreau's belief that Macioce' expected leave of absence would
begin in the very near future."
(ECF No. 65 at 14). But "beliefs" grounded in assumptions are
just the stuff of which pregnancy discrimination claims like those present here are made, and just
the stuff motivating Congress to outlaw them-particularly an employer's "beliefs" or
"presumptions" about the work abilities of childbearing women. See Wagner, 17 F.App'x at 150
("[W]e are certainly unprepared to take judicial notice of the physical abilities or limitations of
women who bear children, other than to note that they would surely vary widely from individual
to individual. Also, Wagner's testimony on this precise issue reflects an undisputed intent on her
part to work up until delivery and to not take maternity leave."). This is a direct evidence case.
Discriminatory Intent as a Matter of Law
The evidence that Moreau acted on presumptions regarding Macioce's pregnancy and
childbirth is established by uncontroverted evidence in the form of Moreau' s own testimony, and
as set out in Bob Evans' own papers. Even viewing that record in the light most favorable to
Bob Evans, the Court concludes that there is no genuine issue of material fact and the EEOC has
established discrimination based on pregnancy as to Macioce's terms and conditions of
employment as a matter of law.
The record would not support such a conclusion. Here's why. Moreau testified that he learned of Macioce's
pregnancy directly from Macioce, in the very same conversation in which he told her that she was "zeroed out" of
the automatic schedule. He then says that at around the same time, he learned via "hearsay" from co-workers that
Macioce's delivery was "close." ECF No. 58-3 at 13-18. But, as noted below, given that Moreau says that he first
learned of the pregnancy from Macioce, and told her in the same conversation that she was "zeroed out," any such
"hearsay" could not have been the basis for the "zeroing out."
This is not an extraordinary conclusion. Notably, Carney, Martinson, Gillin, Peralta, and
Corinth also all held that the plaintiff was entitled to summary judgment on liability. In Carney,
the employer admitted that its decision to place the employee on leave without her request was
based on a pregnancy related condition. Thus, the plaintiff proved pregnancy discrimination
based on direct evidence as a matter of law. 824 F.2d at 648. In Carney, the plaintiff like
Macioce had not sought leave and was able to perform her job.
In granting summary judgment to the plaintiff on liability for pregnancy discrimination in
Peralta, the district court also considered the narrow BFOQ exception to liability and determined
that the employer did not have sufficient evidence to establish the exception, particularly because
"[t]he only justifications that defendants provide[ d] for their decision to forbid [the plaintiff] to
work without a doctor's note were their concerns over her health, possible danger to her unborn
child, and possible future tort liability," all of which were inadequate under the PDA and
Johnson Controls. 2000 WL 34633645, at* 6. "It is no more appropriate for the courts than it is
for individual employers to decide whether a woman's reproductive role is more important to
herself and her family than her economic role. Congress has left this choice to the woman as
hers to make." Johnson Controls, 499 U.S. at 211.
The PDA compels the conclusion that an employer cannot require a pregnant employee
to stop working unless she is unable to work, preserving the decision to work to the woman's
judgment in the first instance. 499 U.S. at 205. An employer cannot act to take away a pregnant
employee's shifts because she will go into labor at some point. Nor can it place a roadblock in
her path by taking her off of the automatic schedule (and thereby reducing her work
opportunities) and effectuate the same result.
As discussed below, Moreau's admitted approach to scheduling Macioce for work after
her July 2014 vacation operated on a presumption that, based on Macioce' s pregnancy,, she was
unavailable for work unless she "called in" to request shifts and indicate she in fact was not
unavailable to work due to her pregnancy. Moreau's determination that at any moment Macioce
might be unable to work due to childbirth and should therefore be assumed to be unavailable for
purposes of automatic shift scheduling was based solely on his belief that her due date, i.e., her
unavailability to work due to childbirth, was imminent, which in tum was based on the fact of
her pregnancy. 14 That decision amounted to impermissible discrimination based on her
pregnancy. This is an unexceptional conclusion, since there is no other way to view it consistent
with the edict in Johnson Controls that an assumption that a woman is incapable of working at
any stage in pregnancy because of pregnancy constitutes unlawful discrimination "because of
sex." Likewise, requiring pregnant women to verify that they continue to be able to work
notwithstanding their pregnancy is similarly prohibited discrimination.
record evidence in this case directly and conclusively establishes that that is what happened here.
Bob Evans seeks to rationalize what happened to Macioce by asserting that it was done
for the predictability of the schedule and that it was only using its "business judgment." (ECF
No. 65 at 14). Anticipated inconvenience as to the predictability of the schedule is not a
sufficient legal justification for discrimination. Whatever annoyance or difficulty Bob Evans
perceived Macioce's pregnancy might cause it in scheduling, the PDA and Johnson Controls
make plain that her pregnancy and related condition of childbirth were prohibited considerations.
14 Moreau testified that at about the same time that Macioce told him she was pregnant and he told her (in the same
conversation) that he was "zeroing" her out, ECF No. 58-3 at 17, he heard via "hearsay" in the restaurant that her
delivery was "imminent." ECF No. 58-3 at 16. While arguably such out of court statements are offered by Bob
Evans not for their truth, but only as to their effect on the listener (Moreau), and would not be hearsay, they don't
change the outcome or analysis, since the law under Title Vil and the PDA is clear-the employer is not free to
make an assumption (whether or not supported by co-worker scuttlebutt) about a pregnant employee's fitness for
The Supreme Court instructs: "the incremental cost of hiring women cannot justify
discriminating against them." Johnson Controls, Inc .. 499 U.S. at 211. This principle applies
with equal force regarding the "cost" or "inconvenience" of continuing to employee pregnant
women. Bob Evans' concern for a perfectly predictable schedule based as it was here on its
assumptions about Macioce's pregnancy cannot shield its conduct.
In sum, there is no genuine issue of material fact that the direct record evidence
establishes that the reason Macioce (1) was removed from the automatic scheduling system,
(2) was expected to call-in as able to work before she would be permitted to work, and (3) was to
be placed onto the schedule only if needed to fill a hole after the automatic schedule was
generated-were Moreau' s assumptions about her pregnancy and future childbirth. This was and
is prohibited by the PDA. Accordingly, the EEOC has met its burden of demonstrating that there
is no genuine issue of material fact on the matter of unlawful discriminatory intent.
Adverse Employment Action
Bob Evans contends that even if the EEOC demonstrates discriminatory intent based on
pregnancy as to Macioce, the EEOC cannot meet its burden to show that Macioce suffered any
adverse employment action. (ECF Nos. 65 at 9; 69 at 9). If the EEOC can establish an adverse
employment action as a matter of law to complete its claim, the EEOC will be entitled to
summary judgment in its favor on liability. If, however, the evidence viewed in the light most
favorable to the EEOC is inadequate to support a finding that Macioce suffered an adverse
employment action, the Court must grant Bob Evans' motion for summary judgment on liability.
If there is a genuine issue of material fact on this point, the broader liability issue will be
submitted to ajury.
"In order to be entitled to relief, a plaintiff must have suffered a cognizable injury."
Storey v. Burns Intern. Security Services, 390 F.3d 760, 764 (3d Cir. 2004).
specifically prohibits discrimination in failure to hire, discharge and compensation as well as in
the terms, conditions or privileges of employment. 42 U.S.C. § 2000e-2(a)(l). A cognizable
injury under Title VII is referred to as an adverse employment action, which the Third Circuit
further defines as "an action by an employer that is serious and tangible enough to alter an
employee's compensation, terms, conditions, or privileges of employment." Storey, 390 F.3d at
764 (internal quotations and citations omitted).
In addition to the failure to hire, discharge,
changes in pay or compensation, which are enumerated in the statute, a transfer to a less
desirable position or an unsatisfactory job evaluation may constitute the requisite adverse
employment action as to the terms, conditions, and privileges of employment, but modest
changes in duties or working conditions and actions that simply make an employee unhappy but
not producing a material disadvantage do not. King v. City of New Kensington, Civ. Act. No. 061015, 2008 WL 4492503, at *I 0 (W.D. Pa. Sept. 30, 2008), as amended (Oct. 3, 2008); see
Johnson v. Community of Allegheny County, 566 F. Supp. 2d 405, 430 (W.D. Pa. 2008) (adverse
employment action in Third Circuit includes transfers to less desirable position).
Bob Evans relies on Langley v. Merck & Co., No. 04-3796, 2005 WL 1279108 (E.D. Pa.
May 25, 2005), ajf'd 186 F.App'x 258 (3d Cir. 2006); King v. City of New Kensington, Civ. Act.
No. 06-1015, 2008 WL 4492503 (W.D. Pa. Sept. 30, 2008), as amended Oct. 3, 2008; Petro-
Ryder v. Pittman, Civ. Act. No. 15-2908, 2015 WL 8731623 (E.D. Pa. Dec. 11, 2015), Moss v.
Advance Circuits, Inc., 981 F. Supp. 123 9, 1246 (D. Miss. 1997), and De Mary v. Kennedy
Health Sys., Civ. Act. No. 11-05984, 2014 WL 3748591 (D.N.J. July 30, 1994), to argue that the
change in how it scheduled Macioce for work was not an adverse employment action at all.
(ECF No. 65 at 10-11 ). The EEOC points out in its response that these cases only involved
schedule changes with no loss of hours and pay.
In Langley, for example, a race discrimination claim was brought pursuant to 42 U.S.C.
§ 1981. The plaintiff claimed her reassignment was an adverse employment action, but conceded
that her pay and grade level did not change, and the evidence showed that her career
opportunities and prospects for advancement remained the same and that at most she suffered
inconvenience. The district court held that she failed to establish the existence of a requisite
adverse action because "an adverse employment action 'must be more disruptive than a mere
inconvenience or an alteration of job responsibilities."' 2005 WL 1279108, at *3 (quoting Crady
v. Liberty Nat'! Bank & Trust Co., 993 F.2d 132, 136 (7th Cir. 1993)). Our Court of Appeals
affirmed, observing that a change in title, office, and reporting responsibilities without a change
in pay or evidence that the new position was inferior did not suffice as an adverse employment
action. 186 F.App'x at 260-61.
In King, the plaintiff police officer claimed pregnancy discrimination when she requested
light duty for five months because she felt the municipality was "dangerous" and she did not feel
safe to be on the road. Her request was denied, she only was given one month light duty, and her
shift time was changed during the month of light duty. 2008 WL 4492503, at *2. The court
determined that these were not adverse employment actions, explaining:
[a] shift change does not in and of itself amount to a material disadvantage. If
there had been a reduction in pay or an effect on career prospects, the change
might arguably rise to the level of a material disadvantage and an alteration of the
terms, conditions, and privileges of employment. . . . Plaintiff only offered that
the shift was inconvenient for her personally because of her particular
circumstances (her husband also works the midnight shift and she wanted to be
free during daytime hours to sell her home, build a new home, and prepare for her
King, 2008 WL 4492503, at * 11 (internal citations omitted).
Importantly, the Third Circuit specifically held in Mondzelewski v. Pathmark Stores, Inc.,
162 F. 3d 778 (3d. Cir. 1998), that depending on the case, a change in shifts alone may constitute
the requisite change or alteration in terms, conditions or privileges of employment. 162 F .3d at
787. "Assigning an employee to an undesirable schedule can be more than a 'trivial' or minor
change in the employee's working conditions." 162 F.3d at 788. In Mondzelewski, the evidence
supported the conclusion that the change in shift to a facially desirable shift was one that
employees nevertheless viewed as undesirable and a punishment, and that would suffice as a
change in the terms, conditions or privileges of employment. Here, Macioce was removed from
the automatic scheduling process and was scheduled for work only where management could
find "holes" or "gaps" in the schedule. This cannot reasonably be viewed as trivial or simply an
inconvenience, where as here there was a marked drop off in Macioce's work frequency.
Petro-Ryder and Moss, relied on by Bob Evans, are inapposite. The court in Petro-Ryder
determined that the change in shift did not constitute an adverse employment action because the
plaintiffs own testimony contradicted the argument that the new shift was undesirable. 2015
WL 8731623, at* 8. In Moss, involving race discrimination, the district court determined that
the denial of a requested shift change and the requirement that the plaintiff advise her supervisor
ahead of time when she was requesting a schedule change did not rise to the level of adverse
employment actions. 981 F. Supp. at 1246. Macioce, unlike Moss, did not request any shift
change or complain about the nature of shifts received; the complaint here was centered on her
elimination from the automatic schedule process and the resulting reduction in shifts.
DeMary also provides no support for Bob Evans' position.
That case involved the
plaintiffs challenge to the employer's "action" of only providing her with a copy of a two week
advanced written schedule, instead of a copy of the full six week schedule.
This did not
constitute an adverse employment action because the complete work schedule was available online and, although the plaintiff claimed she had to ask supervisors on a daily basis just which
hours she was scheduled to work, the advanced schedule was accessible to her, she was not
denied computer access, and she "could have just as easily logged on to the computer to view her
schedule." 2014 WL 3748591, at *7. The court concluded that "the 'mere inconvenience' of
doing so, and any associated 'inconvenience' in being unable to make long-term social plans,
cannot give rise to an actionable claim." Id.
According to Bob Evans, the inconvenience Macioce faced by being removed from
automatic scheduling process and having to call-in to obtain her shifts is insufficient as a matter
of law to establish an adverse employment action caused by unlawful discrimination. (ECF No.
65 at 9). The Court agrees that an actionable adverse action, other than one causing a reduction
in pay or compensation, must be more disruptive than a "mere inconvenience" to constitute a
change in the terms, conditions or privileges of employment. But this is not a case like DeMary
where the plaintiff complained she was not provided a copy of her schedule six weeks in
advance, plainly only an inconvenience. The challenged action here is not the failure of her
employer to provide an advance copy of the schedule she actually was on. It is that she was not
on the generated work schedule at all and was expected to call-in to report that she was able to
work and to then find available work.
Bob Evans' suggestion that a change from automatic to manual shift scheduling, (ECF
No. 65 at l ), is not ever actionable is at odds with the undisputed evidence here, specifically the
testimony of Moreau and Giaquinto, Bob Evans' own work records as produced in discovery and
even Bob Evans' arguments in seeking summary judgment. What happened to Macioce was
something different from a "mere inconvenience" in the form of a manual schedule. First, the
only shifts Moreau "manually" scheduled Macioce for (after removing her from automatic
scheduling) were in the first week, as he testified.
Second, after being removed from the
automatic scheduling, Macioce could be scheduled to work only if needed based on gaps on the
already automatically generated schedule-a schedule that Macioce no longer had the
opportunity to be on.
Third, Bob Evans' argument that Macioce cannot succeed on her
discrimination claim because after August 22, 2014 she no longer called in, and therefore, failed
in her efforts to "pick up shifts," (ECF No. 65 at 10), suffers from multiple flaws: she never
asked to be taken off of the schedule in the first place; she did seek out shifts; and this argument
is premised on the contention that Bob Evans lawfully could place such a requirement on her
(one that Congress outlawed, namely requiring a pregnant woman to show her ability to continue
working) while not placing it on non-pregnant employees.
The record is undisputed that Macioce suffered significant disruption in her terms and
conditions of employment as established on the undisputed factual record, even when viewed in
the light most favorable to Bob Evans. Here's why. The employment action challenged here
effectively changed Macioce's terms and conditions from that of a regularly scheduled part-time
shift worker to a.fill-in part-time shift worker-with the uncertainty of such a schedule placed on
the pregnant worker because she is pregnant and would at some point give birth-both of which
are prohibited considerations under Title VII.
cy Schneider v.
Jax Shack, Inc., 794 F.2d 383, 385
(8th Cir. 1986) (pregnancy discrimination case involving claim of constructive discharge wherein
court recognized that "[e]mployers should not be able to avoid responsibility for discriminatory
discharges by first demoting employees to part-time or fill-in status or by stringing out
employees' tenures with nebulous commitments until the employees for their own economic
well-being must 'quit."').
The removal of Macioce from the automatic scheduling process
imposed a discrete burden on her. She would have no schedule of shifts, based on her pregnancy,
unless she could find an available shift due to a "hole" in the schedule, or an increased staffing
need at the restaurant, or because someone had called-off. This change based on pregnancy from
a server on the automatically generated schedule to one relegated to doing fill-in work is
discrimination in a term, condition or privilege of her employment. There is no genuine issue of
material fact as to this and the record conclusively establishes that Macioce was removed from
the automatic scheduling process and was relegated to "fill-in" worker status based on her
pregnancy and the related condition of childbirth. This is a violation of the first clause of the
The Court will next address the call-in procedure Macioce was supposed to follow and
that Bob Evans touts as simple and easy, along with Macioce's asserted failure to comply with it
after August 22, 2014.
Bob Evans insists there can be no adverse action here because all
Macioce had to do was call-in and her shift requests would be granted. But any asse1ied failure
by Macioce to call-in to in essence prove her availability to work cannot be held against her
consistent with the PDA. Expecting her to call-in to obtain work in order to demonstrate that she
was able to work despite her pregnancy was itself a discriminatory adverse action. Bob Evans'
position is in reality a contention that a pregnant employee is at some point presumed to be
unable to work unless and until she calls in to verify she is able to work and to ask for a work
shift. In other words, the "simple" task required of Macioce to be able to come to work was that
Macioce, who was the pregnant worker Bob Evans believed could go into labor "imminently,"
who had not indicated she would no longer be working as of some specific date, and who had not
requested any leave, was being required by her employer to repeatedly inform it that she
intended to work, was not in labor, and though pregnant could work that day or the upcoming
This call-in requirement placed on Macioce, based on speculation of the anticipated
effects of her pregnancy, is one that the PDA prohibits, Johnson counsels is untenable, and
which is unlawful. See S. Rep. No. 331, 95th Cong. 2d Sess. 6 (1978); Carney, 824 F.2d at 64647, 649; Deneen, 132 F.3d at 436; Peralta, 2000 WL 34633645, at *4. As with the change to
"fill-in" worker status, the "call-in" requirement likewise constituted an unlawful adverse
employment action based on pregnancy discrimination.
Discrimination in Compensation
Finally is the matter of discrimination in compensation, a tangible adverse employment
action specifically enumerated in the PDA. Bob Evans cites Cham v. Station Operators, Inc.,
685 F.3d 87 (151 Cir. 2012), to contend that whatever loss Macioce suffered regarding her hours
and pay was in essence de minimis and not sufficient to meet that statutory standard. (ECF No.
65 at 12). The First Circuit in Cham determined that a full-time hourly employee's loss of shifts
on three occasions and a reduction of hours in one particular week was insufficient to constitute
an adverse action because it caused no loss in employee benefits, the plaintiff was not entitled to
any particular shift, and plaintiff was not "guaranteed" any shifts or even forty hours per week.
Cham required that the change in pay be something more substantial. The Cham court appears to
have determined that the loss of "some" pay (compensation using Title VII' s statutory language)
could pass muster under Title VII despite being caused by unlawful discrimination, if the loss
was not a big one.
Title VII does not contain a qualifier on the prohibition of discrimination in
"compensation," such as requiring the loss of compensation to be "substantial," "significant" or
"considerable." Moreover, what may not be significant in terms of an amount of loss to one
employee may be quite significant to another. Facially, a reduction of shifts, and its resulting
reduction in compensation, will constitute an adverse employment action. Mock v. Northampton
County Sheriff's Dep't., Civ. A. No. 07-36-7, 2008 WL 2996714, at *8 (E.D. Pa. Aug. 5, 2008);
Lidwell v. University Park Nursing Care Center, 116 F. Supp. 2d 571, 584 (M.D. Pa. 2000).
When an employee earns less compensation because of pregnancy discrimination, the PDA has
The evidence as to the amount of the hours and pay lost in this case is to a degree more
Bob Evans posits that after removing Macioce from the automatic schedule,
Macioce's scheduled work was sufficiently "similar" to a four-day-a-week schedule, and thus,
she therefore could not have suffered an adverse employment action. (ECF No. 72, at
Although Bob Evans' own records establish that Macioce worked 4.86 days per week on average
before being taken off of the automatic schedule, assuming the four-day-a-week schedule it
urges, a three-day-a-week schedule simply is not "similar" to a four-day-a-week schedule for
these purposes. Why? It is 25% less in terms of earning opportunity. Moreover, the record
reveals that Bob Evans scheduled Macioce for only two shifts for the workweek beginning
August 7, 2014, which is the workweek for which the elimination from automatic scheduling
was effective; for three shifts for the workweek beginning August 14, 2014; for one shift for the
workweek beginning August 21, 2014; for no shifts the workweek beginning August 28, 2014;
for no shifts the workweek beginning September 4, 2014; and for no shifts the workweek
beginning September 11, 2014. Even if Macioce had been able to obtain a "similar" schedule as
a fill-in through August 22, 2014, that would not get Bob Evans out of the fix it is in. 15 Bob
Similarly, ifthe Court considered hours actually worked as indicated on the "raw punches," as opposed to days or
shifts, once Macioce was given no scheduled work based on consideration of her pregnancy and childbirth as of
August 23, 2014, discrimination in her compensation is established on this record. The evidence produced by Bob
Evans shows not only that Moreau changed Macioce to a "zero" for automated scheduling but that although
Macioce was scheduled for five shifts a week in each of the workweeks beginning July 31, August 7, and August 14,
Moreau also took the steps necessary to delete her from the schedule for 11 of 15 of those shifts.
Evans' argument fails to consider the effect of the zero-days-a week it scheduled Macioce to
work by the workweek beginning August 28, 2014. The reduction in hours and resulting pay to
zero establishes the existence of an adverse employment action because of pregnancy
discrimination. There is no genuine issue of material fact and a reasonable jury would be
compelled to find on this record that Macioce suffered an adverse employment action because of
pregnancy discrimination. Thus, the EEOC's claim is complete as to liability. 16
In sum, the discriminatory removal of Macioce from the automatic scheduling process,
relegating her to fill-in worker status, requiring her to "call-in" in order to show her availability,
and the loss of work and accompanying pay are adverse employment actions that altered
Macioce's compensation, terms, conditions and privileges of employment because of her sex.
The Court concludes that there is no genuine issue of material fact that Macioce suffered sex
discrimination prohibited by Title VII based on her pregnancy. Accordingly, Bob Evans' motion
for summary judgment based on lack of an adverse employment action is denied and summary
judgment will be granted in favor of the EEOC on liability.
There is some dispute as to the precise amount of shifts and pay Macioce ultimately lost as a result of the
discrimination. The EEOC does not seek summary judgment as to the amount of back pay damages that should be
awarded. According to the EEOC, Macioce worked a five-day-a-week schedule and "would have been scheduled for
up to twenty five shifts by the automated scheduling system, had it not been for Moreau's interference. Instead, she
worked the remaining three shifts that the automated system scheduled her for, and an additional five she was able
to get by filling in where there was a need." (ECF No. 71 at 2). The EEOC has also asserted specifically that
Macioce lost pay in the amount of $948.96. (ECF No. 64-5 at 3). Bob Evans contends there was little or no loss in
pay because Macioce ultimately worked a substantially similar schedule compared to the four-day-a-week schedule
that Moreau had indicated she usually worked (even though she was not scheduled for work at all after August 22,
2014). (ECF No. 65 at 10). There also is some evidence that the final schedule ultimately worked by servers
between July 31, 2014 and September 12, 2014 due to the restaurant's actual scheduling needs had less servers
working than that generated by the automatic shift scheduling system. (ECF No. 71 at 6) (citing ECF Nos. 70-21;
70-22 [Exs. T and U]). Ultimately, the exact amount of back pay that the Court should award is a determination for a
later date. Spencer v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., 469 F.3d 311, 317 (3d Cir. 2006) ("Given the statutory language, and
the language in Landgraf [v. US! Film Products, 511 U.S. 244 ( 1994)] distinguishing the former remedial structure
allowing back pay from the new structure allowing compensatory damages, it is obvious that back pay remains an
equitable remedy to be awarded within the discretion of the court.") (internal citation omitted)).
Compensatory Damages for Emotional Distress
As observed in Spencer v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., 469 F.3d 311 (3d Cir. 2006):
[t]he Civil Rights Act of 1991 expanded the recovery allowed under the 1964 Act
and permitted compensatory damages. [Landgraf v. US! Film Products, 511 U.S.
244, 252-53, 114 S.Ct. 1483 (1994)]. Compensatory damages include '"future
pecuniary losses, emotional pain, suffering, inconvenience, mental anguish, loss
of enjoyment of life, and other nonpecuniary losses."' Id. at 253, 114 S.Ct. 1483
(quoting 42 U.S.C. § 1981 a(b)(3)).
469 F.3d at 316.
Bob Evans argues that it is entitled to summary judgment on the EEOC's request for
emotional distress damages because although Macioce testified that she was stressed and
depressed, she has not demonstrated: 1) that she was diagnosed with depression; and 2) that "her
depression was caused by the two-week period in which she was required to call-in to be
manually scheduled for shifts." (ECF No. 65 at 20). Bob Evans further argues that because
Macioce's description of her stress was only that it made her depressed, (ECF No. 65 at 7 & n.3),
because she does not have evidence of a diagnosis of depression, and because she previously had
received "psychological therapy" unrelated to her employment at Bob Evans, she is not entitled
to compensatory damages as a matter of law.
Bolden v. Southeastern Pennsylvania Transp. Authority, 2 l F.3d 29 (3d Cir. 1994),
explains that because of the broad remunerative purpose of the civil rights law, expert testimony
is not required to establish or corroborate a claim for emotional distress. 21 F.3d at 34; see also
Ridley v. Costco Wholesale Corp., 217 F.App'x 130, 136-137 (3d Cir. 2007) (observing that jury
awards for emotional distress damages are properly upheld without medical testimony).
Additionally, that a person previously treated for psychological issues may be probative as to the
cause of the emotional distress claimed, but it would not automatically preclude such recovery.
Bob Evans asserts as fact that any emotional distress Macioce experienced was
necessarily unrelated to any discrimination by Bob Evans. (ECF No. 65 at 20). Macioce testified
that she suffered emotional distress from financial issues. When asked to describe the situation,
she explained that at the time she delivered her child, "We had no money .... My husband, his
job, there was a lack of work right around the time I had my son." (ECF No. 64-1 at 9). She
also indicated that she was depressed. Bob Evans relies on Macioce's deposition testimony that
she experienced financial stress when her husband had issues with lack of work to necessarily
mean that Macioce had financial stress solely relating to her husband's employment situation.
This does not fully represent Macioce's testimony, particularly when viewed in the light most
favorable to her as the non-moving party. Macioce testified that due to a lack of work for her
husband around the time she was discriminated against they "had no money," that when her
husband had work "money was okay," and when he did not have work "money was not okay."
But this is not the same as testimony that any financial stress as a result of the cutback in her
shifts did not cause any emotional distress. Consistent with her financial struggles, Macioce had
approached Moreau in April of 2014, seeking full-time work. (ECF No. 64-1at22, 26 [Macioce
Dep. at 102, 108]. One reasonable inference from the evidence as a whole is that the reduction in
Macioce's own compensation as a result of the reduction in shifts resulted in her experiencing
additional financial stress-not that the only stress was due to the lack of work experienced by
There also is evidence in the record that Macioce experienced frustration with the
decision by Moreau to remove her from the automated scheduling, particularly where Moreau
knew of her expressed desire for full-time work, knew she wanted to work until she delivered her
baby, and knew she did not want her availability changed to zero, yet changed her availability in
the system to zero so he would not be "screwed" by her going into labor. See Ridley v. Costco
Wholesale Corp., 217 F.App'x 130, 136-137 (3d Cir. 2007) (testimony at trial on emotional
distress that included financial distress and frustration supported an award of emotional distress
damages). Macioce's Declaration further provides that when she returned from vacation and
found herself with dwindling shifts, she felt humiliated and experienced anxiety regarding
finances. (ECF No. 70-4 at 3). Viewing these facts in the light most favorable to Macioce, the
question of any entitlement to compensatory damages, including emotional distress damages,
remains for a jury to decide. Accordingly, Bob Evans' motion for summary judgment as to
emotional distress damages will be denied.
Punitive damages and the good faith defense
Bob Evans contends that it is entitled to summary judgment as to punitive damages, and
alternatively, that it is entitled to a limit on the amount of punitive damages prior to trial. In tum,
the EEOC contends that it is entitled to summary judgment on Bob Evans' anticipated assertion
of a good faith defense to punitive damages. Both motions will be denied.
Section 1981 a governs damages for intentional discrimination in employment. It
A complaining party may recover punitive damages under this section against a
respondent (other than a government, government agency or political subdivision)
if the complaining party demonstrates that the respondent engaged in a
discriminatory practice or discriminatory practices with malice or with reckless
indifference to the federally protected rights of an aggrieved individual.
42 U.S.C. § 1981a(b)(l). The Supreme Court, in Kolstad v. American Dental Ass'n, 527 U.S.
526, 535 (1999), explained:
§ 1981 a's focus on the employer's state of mind gives some effect to Congress'
apparent intent to narrow the class of cases for which punitive awards are
available to a subset of those involving intentional discrimination. The employer
must act with "malice or with reckless indifference to the [plaintiffs] federally
protected rights." § 1981 a(b )(1) (emphasis added). The terms "malice" or
"reckless indifference" pertain to the employer's knowledge that it may be acting
in violation of federal law, not its awareness that it is engaging in discrimination.
527 U.S. at 535.
Under this standard, "an employer must at least discriminate in the face of a perceived
risk that its actions will violate federal law to be liable in punitive damages." 527 U.S. at 536.
[Although] [e]gregious misconduct is often associated with the award of punitive
damages, . . . the reprehensible character of the conduct is not generally
considered apart from the requisite state of mind. Conduct warranting punitive
awards has been characterized as "egregious," for example, because of the
defendant's mental state. That conduct committed with the specified mental state
may be characterized as egregious, however, is not to say that employers must
engage in conduct with some independent, "egregious" quality before being
subject to a punitive award.
527 U.S. at 537 (internal citations omitted). Nevertheless, "evidence of egregious misconduct
may be used to meet the plaintiffs burden of proof." 527 U.S. at 546.
Kolstad acknowledged that:
[t]here will be circumstances where intentional discrimination does not give rise
to punitive damages liability under this standard. In some instances, the employer
may simply be unaware of the relevant federal prohibition. There will be cases,
moreover, in which the employer discriminates with the distinct belief that its
discrimination is lawful. The underlying theory of discrimination may be novel or
otherwise poorly recognized, or an employer may reasonably believe that its
discrimination satisfies a bona fide occupational qualification defense or other
statutory exception to liability.
527 U.S. at 536-37.
In addition to defining the contours of punitive damages awards, Kolstad recognized a
good faith exception to punitive damages claims, acknowledging that giving protection from
punitive damages for an employer's good-faith efforts aimed at preventing workplace
discrimination would accomplish Title VII's objectives by motiving employers to detect and
deter discrimination. 527 U.S. at 546.
Recognizing Title VII as an effort to promote prevention as well as remediation,
and observing the very principles underlying the Restatements' strict limits on
vicarious liability for punitive damages, ... in the punitive damages context, an
employer may not be vicariously liable for the discriminatory employment
decisions of managerial agents where these decisions are contrary to the
employer's good-faith efforts to comply with Title VII.
Kolstad, 527 U.S. at 545 (internal quotations and citations omitted).
Although it is the plaintiff's burden to prove any entitlement to punitive damages, our
Court of Appeals has left open the question of whether Kolstad's "good faith" standard is an
affirmative defense for which the employer shoulders the burden. Specifically, in Medcalf v.
Trustees of University of Pennsylvania, 71 F.App'x 924 (3d Cir. 2003), the Court noted but
declined to resolve the issue because the defendant had failed to object to the lack of a Kolstad
charge to the jury at trial and "waived any argument that its good faith efforts to comply with
Title VII preclude[d] the imposition of vicarious liability for [punitive damages]." 71 F.App'x at
933. The Medcalf court recognized that several appellate courts had held that the "good faith"
standard is an affirmative defense. 71 F.App'x at 933 n.3. See Zimmermann v. Assoc. First
Capital Corp., 251 F.3d 376, 385 (2d Cir. 2001); Romanov. U-Haul, Int'!, 233 F.3d 655, 670
(1st Cir. 2000); Passantino v. Johnson & Johnson Consumer Prods., Inc., 212 F.3d 493, 516 (9th
Cir. 2000); Deffenbaugh-Williams v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., 188 F.3d 278, 286 (5th Cir. 1999)).
Passantino points out that Kolstad essentially expanded the defense to liability for hostile work
environment claims enunciated in Burlington Industries, Inc. v. Ellerth, 524 U.S. 742, 765
(1998), to claims for punitive damages under Title VII, 212 F.3d at 516, and the Burlington
defense is an affirmative one on which the employer has the burden of proof. 524 U.S. at 765.
This Court finds Passantino's reasoning persuasive that the "good faith" exception to punitive
damages is an affirmative defense for the employer to prove.
The EEOC claims that Bob Evans' policies are so inadequate on their face such that it
could never satisfy the "good faith" standard established in Kolstad because those polices are too
general and do not expressly prohibit pregnancy discrimination.
In arguing for summary
judgment, the EEOC cites to a portion of the Employee Handbook that refers only generally to
providing equal employment opportunity, and that personnel actions will be taken in a nondiscriminatory manner. (ECF No. 59 at 12). Bob Evans' 2014 Employee Handbook policies,
however, provide more detail than the EEOC acknowledges, containing separate harassment and
anti-discrimination policies, and including an open door policy with alternative avenues to report
workplace concerns, such as direct reporting to the Human Resources Department if an
employee is uncomfortable with other lines of reporting. Additionally, although Moreau did not
recall specific anti-discrimination training as he became a General Manager, Moreau had acted to
ensure that new employees received the anti-discrimination materials contained within the
Handbook, by going over anti-discrimination and open-door policies and obtaining signatures
acknowledging them, and Macioce herself had acknowledged receipt and review of the May
The cases relied on by the EEOC, (ECF No. 59 at 13-15), largely involve an employer's
failure to obtain summary judgment in its favor and against the plaintiff on the good faith
defense to punitive damages, and do not support the EEOC's contention that it is entitled to
summary judgment as to the good faith defense in this case. While an employer's failure to
establish specific Title VII compliance efforts or its response to an employee's complaint, such
as Macioce's expressed displeasure to Giaquinto, may prevent a determination that an employer
has acted in good faith efforts as a matter oflaw, Deffenbaugh-Williams v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.,
188 F.3d 278, 286 (5 1h Cir. 1999), consideration of E.E.O.C. v. Aldi, Inc., No. CIV A 06-01210,
2008 WL 5429624 (W.D. Pa. Dec. 31, 2008), convinces this Court that Bob Evans is entitled to
have a jury decide whether it can establish the good faith defense to punitive damages laid out in
The court in Aldi rejected a motion in limine made by the plaintiff as to the good faith
defense in a religious discrimination case, noting:
[t]he disputed evidence references Defendant's policy of preventing
"discrimination of any kind," and is therefore, relevant to Defendant's defense that
it made good faith efforts to comply with anti-discrimination laws under Kolstad
v. Am. Dental Ass'n, 527 U.S. 526, 119 S.Ct. 2118, 144 L.Ed.2d 494 (1999). To
the extent that Plaintiffs have objected to the disputed evidence on the basis that it
does not sufficiently address the issue of religious discrimination, Plaintiffs will
have an opportunity to cross examine Aldi's witnesses as to same. Accordingly,
Plaintiffs' motion is denied.
2008 WL 5429624, at *5 (internal citations omitted) (denying motion in limine on good faith
Following the reasonmg m Aldi, that Bob Evans did not expressly list pregnancy
discrimination in its anti-discrimination policy does not take the application of the good faith
defense away from the jury. The defense to a punitive damages claim in this case, including
consideration of the nature and extent of the training given on Bob Evans' anti-discrimination
policy to its management and servers such as Macioce, as well as its formal policies, are matters
left for decision by the jury. See Ridley v. Costco Wholesale Corp., 217 F.App'x 130 (3d Cir.
2007) (affirming summary judgment in favor of employer on good faith defense where it was
undisputed that employer maintained policies against discrimination, had an open door policy for
reporting discrimination, and also consistently acted to enforce its anti-discrimination policy and
provide detailed training to supervisors regarding discrimination). Viewing the evidence in the
light most favorable to Bob Evans, Bob Evans can show that it had anti-discrimination policies,
required review of the policies by management and by employees, including Macioce (who
acknowledged receiving and reviewing the May 2014 version of its policies), and had open door
policies and alternate avenues to raise issues of discrimination, and a reasonable jury could find
on this record that the conduct of Moreau was contrary to the good faith efforts of Bob Evans to
comply with Title VII. Thus, the EEOC's motion for summary judgment on the good faith
defense will be denied.
Turning to Bob Evans' motion for summary judgment on the basis that the EEOC cannot
show entitlement to any punitive damages, viewing the evidence in the light most favorable to
the EEOC, a jury could find that Moreau knew that pregnancy discrimination was unlawful, yet
proceeded in his conduct because he was concerned that Macioce's pregnancy and future
childbirth would "screw him over" on scheduling, knew that Macioce desired to work full-time 17
but dissuaded her, knew that Macioce intended to work until she delivered her baby but acted in
direct disregarded Macioce's specific request that her availability in the automatic scheduling
system not be changed to zero; Bob Evans' anti-discrimination policy did not specifically
prohibit discrimination based on pregnancy; and Bob Evans did not expressly train its managers
on pregnancy discrimination issues nor provide specific anti-discrimination training to General
Manager Moreau. Based on the record facts, a reasonable jury could find the discrimination
against Macioce based on her pregnancy was with malice or was in reckless indifference to her
federal rights and as a result could find Bob Evans liable for punitive damages.
Bob Evans' additional assertion that prior to a jury determining any entitlement to
amounts of compensatory and punitive damages, that the amount of punitive damages should be
limited by the Court as excessive because the award necessarily would be disproportionate to any
compensatory damages the jury could award, (ECF No. 65 at 23-24), is premature. Argument
There is testimony by Macioce that she had indicated to Moreau that she would like to be a full-time server and he
persuaded her against it based on her pregnancy by telling her that he "didn't think it was a good idea because [she]
would be taking a leave in near future." (ECF No. 64-1 at 22, 26 [Macioce Dep. at I 02, I 08]).
for a remitterur, including application of the statutory cap on such damages, see 42 U.S.C. §
1981 a(b )(3 ), if necessary, may be made in the event of an award the amount of which Bob Evans
thereafter contends is unlawfully inappropriate. Accordingly, Bob Evans' motion for summary
judgment as to punitive damages is denied.
Bob Evans also seeks summary judgment on the EEOC's request for injunctive relief. As
provided by 42 U.S.C. § 2000e-5(g)(l):
[i]f the court finds that the respondent has intentionally engaged in or is
intentionally engaging in an unlawful employment practice charged in the
complaint, the court may enjoin the respondent from engaging in such unlawful
employment practice, and order such affirmative action as may be appropriate,
which may include, but is not limited to, reinstatement or hiring of employees,
with or without back pay (payable by the employer, employment agency, or labor
organization, as the case may be, responsible for the unlawful employment
practice), or any other equitable relief as the court deems appropriate.
42 U.S.C. § 2000e-5.
According to Bob Evans, the EEOC is not entitled to any injunctive relief as a matter of
law because the request for such relief in its Complaint is too broad and the EEOC has no
"evidence to show a cognizable danger ofrecurrent violations." (ECF No. 65 at 2). Specifically,
in the Complaint, the EEOC requests as relief that the Court enjoin Bob Evans, "its officers,
agents, servants, employees, attorneys, and all persons in active concert or participation with
them, from engaging in employment practices which discriminate on the basis of sex and/or
pregnancy," (ECF No. 1 at 4,
A [Prayer for Relief]), and order Bob Evans "to institute and
carry out training, policies, practices, and programs which provide equal employment
opportunities for all employees, including pregnant females, and which eradicate the effects of
its past and present unlawful employment practices." (ECF No. 1 at 4, at if B [Prayer for Relief]).
Relying on cases in which a court denied portions of requested injunctive relief, such as
Davis v. Richmond, Fredericksburg and Potomac R. Co., 803 F.2d 1322, 1328 (4th Cir. 1986),
Bob Evans argues that the broad pleading request here amounts to an improper request for an
injunction providing that Bob Evans "obey Title VII," subjecting it to future contempt sanctions
for unrelated violations of Title VII. Bob Evans' position that no injunctive relief should be
granted as a matter of law is contrary to the language of the statute, the instruction by our Court
of Appeals in NAACP v. North Hudson Regional Fire & Rescue, 665 F.3d 464, 484-86 (3d Cir.
2011), and even some of the cases that Bob Evans cites. See Davis, 803 F.2d at 1328 (reversing
only as to a sub-paragraph of injunction entered by district court).
In NAACP, a case involving race discrimination, the Court instructed:
[o]nee a court identifies racial discrimination, it must order relief that will remedy
past discrimination and curb the potential for future discrimination. See Albemarle
Paper Co. v. Moody, 422 U.S. 405, 418, 95 S.Ct. 2362, 45 L.Ed.2d 280 (1975)
(quoting Louisiana v. United States, 380 U.S. 145, 154, 85 S.Ct. 817, 13 L.Ed.2d
709 (1965)). Although district courts are afforded substantial discretion in
fashioning injunctive relief, it should not be broader than required to provide a
full remedy to the injured party.
NAACP, 665 F.3d at 485.
Regarding the potential provisions of injunctive relief here and whether a cognizable
danger of recurrent violation is present, the parties at trial (or a post-trial remedial hearing) will
be able to put on their evidence, including evidence on Bob Evans' policies and practices
regarding discrimination, now and then, the existence or lack of specific prohibitions and
training on pregnancy discrimination, and the scope of any remedial response. The Court would
then determine whether and to what extent any injunctive relief is required under applicable law
and is appropriate in the circumstances. Bob Evans' present arguments are more suited to the
nature and extent of that remedy, rather than its present efforts to forestall consideration of any
such injunctive remedy at all.
Accordingly, Bob Evans' motion for summary judgment on
injunctive relief will be denied.
For the reasons stated in this Opinion, Plaintiff's Motion for Summary Judgment on
liability for pregnancy discrimination will be granted, Plaintiff's Motion for Summary Judgment
as to the "good faith" defense to punitive damages will be denied; Defendant's Motion for
Summary Judgment will be denied in all respects. The remaining matters will be set for trial by
An appropriate Order will follow.
Mark R. Hornak
United States District Judge
Dated: August 17, 201 7
All counsel of record
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