United States District Court, S.D. Mississippi, Southern Division
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER GRANTING DEFENDANT'S MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT
LOUIS GUIROLA, Jr., Chief District Judge.
BEFORE THE COURT is the Motion for Summary Judgment  filed by two former defendants, Elaine Lege and David Sanderson. The only remaining defendant, Harrison County, Mississippi, filed a Joinder  and an Amended Joinder  in the Motion, and the plaintiff, Patricia Anderson, filed a response in opposition to the Motion. Harrison County also filed a reply in support of the Motion. After reviewing the submissions of the parties and the applicable law, the Court finds that Harrison County's request for summary judgment should be granted.
FACTS AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY
Patricia Anderson began working as a correctional officer at the Harrison County Adult Detention Center in 2007. (Compl. at ¶ 10, ECF No. 1). She was assigned the canteen officer position, and she worked eight hour shifts, Monday through Friday. (Def.'s Mot., Ex. E at 10-12, ECF No. 63-7).
On April 15, 2012, Major David Sanderson became the warden of the detention center, and he began reviewing the job responsibilities of the detention center's employees to see what changes needed to be made due to staffing and budget constraints as well as the working relationship of the center's various employees. ( Id. at 8). The officers working correction shifts worked twelve-hour shifts when he began serving as warden, but the officers working in the booking department and offender services worked eight hour shifts. ( Id. at 9). In June 2012, Sanderson required all of the officers in the booking department to begin working twelve-hour shifts. ( Id. ) Next, he met with all of the officers working in offender services, including Anderson, to inform them that they would begin working twelve-hour shifts in September 2012. ( Id. at 10-11). These meetings took place in June or July 2012. ( Id. at 11).
Anderson went on family medical leave from August 26, 2012, to September 17, 2012, because she suffers from severe anxiety and depression. (Def.'s Mot., Ex. D at 2-3, ECF No. 63-6; Pl.'s Resp., Ex. 2 at 2, ECF No. 68-2). Twelve-hour shifts for officers who had been working in offender services began on September 14, 2012, before Anderson returned from medical leave. (Def.'s Mot., Ex. C at 6, ECF No. 63-3). On September 20, 2012, Anderson's psychotherapist signed a Family and Medical Leave Act certification stating that Anderson should only work a six to eight hour shift. (Pl.'s Resp., Ex. 2 at 4, ECF No. 68-2). However, he testified that there is no way that Harrison County could accommodate her restriction, due to staff shortages, budget constraints. (Def.'s Mot., Ex. C at 6, ECF No. 63-3). He explained that Harrison County would be required to hire additional staff to work the four hours that Anderson was unable to work during each shift. ( Id. ) Anderson continued to be employed by Harrison County for a few more months but she was eventually terminated for excessive absences. ( Id. at 7; Def.'s Mot., Ex. D at 16, ECF No. 63-6).
Prior to her termination, Anderson had filed a charge of discrimination with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission due to the additional hours she was required to work each shift. (Def.'s Mot., Ex. A, ECF No. 63-1). On July 22, 2013, she filed this lawsuit against the Harrison County Adult Detention Center, the Harrison County Board of Supervisors, Harrison County, Mississippi, Elaine Lege,  and David Sanderson. In her Complaint, Anderson, who is an African American, claimed that the defendants committed race discrimination in violation of Title VII, and violated the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Rehabilitation Act, and the Family and Medical Leave Act. Anderson's Complaint does not assert any claims related to her termination; rather, all of her claims pertain to the additional hours that she was required to work during each shift.
Anderson's claims against the detention center were dismissed pursuant to an Agreed Order entered on September 19, 2014. Lege and Sanderson filed the present Motion for Summary Judgment, and Harrison County, Mississippi, and the Board of Supervisors filed two joinders in the Motion. Soon afterwards, Lege, Sanderson, and the Board of Supervisors were dismissed pursuant to an Agreed Order. The only remaining defendant is Harrison County, Mississippi.
I. ANDERSON'S OBJECTION TO HARRISON COUNTY'S AMENDED JOINDER
On October 13, 2014, Harrison County filed a Joinder that stated:
Harrison County... [does] hereby join in Warden Sanderson and Captain Lege's Motion for Summary Judgment and... Memorandum Brief in Support of their [Motion] and further adopts and incorporates herein, as though fully copied in words and phrases, all of the contents, citations and authorities in said Motion and Memorandum in Support.
(Joinder, ECF No. 65). On November 6, 2014, Harrison County filed an Amended Joinder that included the same language but also stated that Harrison County moves for summary judgment on its behalf. (Am. Joinder, ECF No. 70).
In her response in opposition to the Motion for Summary Judgment, Anderson objected to the Amended Joinder as untimely, because it was filed almost one month after the defendants' deadline for filing dispositive motions. She also notes that the Amended Joinder was filed on ...