United States District Court, S.D. Mississippi, Southern Division
AZAD KABIR, M.D. PLAINTIFF
SINGING RIVER HEALTH SYSTEMS and RANDY ROTH, M.D., in his individual capacity DEFENDANTS
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER GRANTING IN PART AND
DENYING IN PART DEFENDANTS' MOTION TO DISMISS
GUIROLA, JR. UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
THE COURT is the  Motion to Dismiss filed by the
defendants, Singing River Health System (“SRHS”)
and Randy Roth, M.D., in this employment discrimination,
Equal Protection, and First Amendment retaliation case. The
parties have fully briefed the Motion. After reviewing the
submissions of the parties, the record in this matter, and
the applicable law, the Court finds that Defendants'
Motion to Dismiss should be granted in part and denied in
part as set forth below.
plaintiff, Dr. Azad Kabir, began working as a hospitalist at
SRHS on October 1, 2017. On multiple occasions, Dr. Kabir
complained to his superiors about alleged discriminatory
scheduling practices. SRHS terminated Dr. Kabir on
approximately July 20, 2018. In the months following, Dr.
Kabir submitted a civil rights complaint against SRHS to the
United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District
of Mississippi, filed a charge of discrimination against SRHS
with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
(“EEOC”), and submitted complaints to the Office
of Quality and Patient Safety and the Office of the Inspector
General. On January 3, 2019, SRHS filed a lawsuit against Dr.
Kabir, alleging that these complaints constituted defamation.
Dr. Kabir filed a second charge of discrimination with the
EEOC on April 2, 2019.
receiving a dismissal and notice of rights from the EEOC as
to both charges, Dr. Kabir filed this lawsuit against SRHS
and its Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Randy Roth. Dr. Kabir
attempts to file a Title VII discrimination claim against
SRHS, based on national origin, ethnic, and/or religious
discrimination. Dr. Kabir also attempts to file a Title VII
retaliation claim against SRHS. In support of this claim, Dr.
Kabir alleges that SRHS subjected him to adverse working
conditions, terminated his employment, and subjected him to a
baseless lawsuit. In addition, Dr. Kabir attempts to allege a
claim against Dr. Roth for denial of equal protection in
violation of the Fourteenth Amendment of the United States
Constitution. Finally, Dr. Kabir files a purported claim
against Dr. Roth for First Amendment retaliation, again
citing adverse working conditions, his termination, and the
defamation lawsuit. SRHS and Dr. Roth filed the present
Motion to Dismiss pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6).
survive a motion to dismiss filed pursuant to Rule 12(b)(6),
“a complaint must contain sufficient factual matter,
accepted as true, to ‘state a claim to relief that is
plausible on its face.'” Ashcroft v.
Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (quoting Bell Atl.
Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007)). “A
claim has facial plausibility when the plaintiff pleads
factual content that allows the court to draw the reasonable
inference that the defendant is liable for the misconduct
alleged.” Id. (citing Twombly, 550
U.S. at 556).
DR. KABIR'S TITLE VII DISCRIMINATION CLAIM
argues that Dr. Kabir's Title VII discrimination claim
should be dismissed for failure to exhaust administrative
remedies before filing this lawsuit, because the charges of
discrimination Dr. Kabir provided to the EEOC did not contain
primary purpose of Title VII is to trigger the investigatory
and conciliatory procedures of the EEOC, in an attempt to
achieve non-judicial resolution of employment discrimination
claims.” Davis v. Fort Bend Cty., 893 F.3d
300, 303 (5th Cir. 2018). “By exhausting their
administrative remedies by filing formal charges with the
EEOC, Title VII plaintiffs initiate this process.”
Id. Exhaustion is not a jurisdictional requirement
but a “prudential prerequisite” to the filing of
a lawsuit. Id. at 306, 308.
charge must contain “[a] clear and concise statement of
the facts, including pertinent dates, constituting the
alleged unlawful employment practices.” 29 C.F.R.
§ 1601.12(a)(3). “[A] charge is sufficient when
the [EEOC] receives from the person making the charge a
written statement sufficiently precise to identify the
parties, and to describe generally the action or practices
complained of.” 29 C.F.R. § 1601.12(b). The Fifth
Circuit has explained:
Two dueling principles govern our determination of whether
[the plaintiff] exhausted [his] administrative remedies: (1)
[c]onsistent with the remedial purposes underlying Title VII,
we construe employment discrimination charges with the utmost
liberality, bearing in mind that such charges are generally
prepared by laymen untutored in the rules of pleading, and
(2) the charge must contain an adequate factual basis so that
it puts the employer on notice of the existence and nature of
the charges and so the EEOC may have an opportunity to
attempt to obtain voluntary compliance.
Preston v. Tex. Dep't of Family & Protective
Servs., 222 Fed.Appx. 353, 356-57 (5th Cir. 2007)
(internal quotation marks omitted).
Kabir's October 2018 charge contains the following facts:
On or about October 1, 2016, I was hired as a Physician. I
was discriminated against because of my race and religion. ...