United States District Court, S.D. Mississippi, Southern Division
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER GRANTING MOTION FOR
GUIROLA, JR. UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
THE COURT is the Defendant's  Motion for Summary
Judgment in this employment discrimination case. The issues
have been fully briefed. After due consideration of the
parties' submissions and the relevant law, it is the
Court's opinion that there is no question of material
fact for the jury. The Motion will be granted and
Plaintiff's claims dismissed.
is a female African American who has been employed by
Huntington Ingalls for almost three years as of this date.
She filed this lawsuit pro se, alleging that she worked as a
welding instructor from June 2014 to July 2015. When she
complained about not receiving bonuses, she was reassigned to
work in the shipyard. She alleges that males with less
experience than her worked as instructors. She alleges
Huntington Ingalls retaliated against her when it reassigned
her to work in the shipyard, and also terminated her
“in retaliation for providing testimony against the
Defendant in a Title VII race discrimination lawsuit.”
(Compl. 4, ECF No. 1). She referred to Title VII and 42
U.S.C. § 1981 as bases for her claims.
February 18, 2016 Charge of Discrimination, Johnson stated:
I am Black. I was hired by the Respondent on January 24, 2014
as a Welder. I believe I am being disciplined and harassed
because of my race, (Black) and because I complained in June
2015 about not receiving a bonus.
In June 2015 I filed a complaint with Edmond Hughes (Black,
HR Director) in-regards to not receiving bonuses for
recommendations. I believe I was denied a bonus in October
2014 due to my sex and race. In August 2015 I was sent to
work in the yard. I believe that because of my race and sex I
was sent to work in the yard as punishment for a complaint
made regarding safety suggestions.
In August 2015 male employees were allowed to become
Instructors without having the welding experience I was told
I needed in-order to work as an Instructor. I worked as an
Instructor during the time period June 2014-July 2015.
I have been retaliated and discriminated against in violation
of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended.
(Def. Mot. Ex. 14, ECF No. 27-14). She alleges she received a
notice of right to sue on May 19, 2016. (Compl. 3, ECF No.
1). Johnson timely filed this lawsuit within 90 days of
receipt of the notice.
is now represented by counsel, who is “pursuing solely
her claim of race discrimination and retaliation relating to
the failure to pay her work leaderman's pay and the
company's rule change that resulted in her involuntary
transfer out of the training center.” (Pl. Resp. 9 n.
2, ECF No. 33). Huntington Ingalls moves for summary judgment
of these claims on the grounds that the Title VII claims are
time-barred, and Johnson cannot show that she has a viable
§ 1981 race or retaliation claim.
Title VII Claims
order to file suit under Title VII, a plaintiff first must
file a charge with the EEOC within 180 days of the alleged
discriminatory act. And where a Title VII claim is based on
“discrete discriminatory acts” - such as those
alleged here - “[t]he charge . . . must be filed within
the 180-[ ]day time period after the discrete discriminatory
act occurred.” Nat'l R.R. Passenger Corp. v.
Morgan, 536 U.S. 101, 113 (2002); see Tillman v. S.
Wood Preserving of Hattiesburg, Inc., 377 F. App'x
346, 349 (5th Cir. 2010) (identifying “termination,
failure to promote, denial of transfer, and ...