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DE FIGUEIREDO v. TWA

December 7, 1981

Eugene A. DE FIGUEIREDO, Plaintiff,
v.
TRANS WORLD AIRLINES, INC., and Air Line Stewards and Stewardesses Association, Local 550, Transport Workers Union of America, AFL-CIO, Defendants



The opinion of the court was delivered by: WYATT

This opinion sets out the reasons why an order is being directed to be entered dismissing the action for want of jurisdiction. The principal claim is based on Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. § 2000e et seq. and following; sometimes hereafter "Title VII" or "the EEOC Act"). There may be another claim meant to be suggested but which cannot be taken seriously; this seems to derive from the Equal Pay Act of 1963 (29 U.S.C. § 206; the "Equal Pay Act"). There is a reference to 42 U.S.C. § 1981.

1.

In this action, commenced on October 9, 1970, there has been a considerable procedural history. It is concluded, however, that there is no jurisdiction of the action and that judgment should be entered dismissing the action for that reason.

 The action is now at issue on an amended complaint, filed March 15, 1971. This pleading is difficult to understand because it is in violation of Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a) in that it is not a "plain statement of the claim". It appears that plaintiff, a male purser employed by defendant Trans World Airlines, Inc. ("TWA"), asserts that in some way TWA is discriminating against male pursers in favor of other employees of TWA who are female and classified as hostesses or (more recently) cabin attendants.

 There is at least a suggestion in the amended complaint that a separate claim is being asserted under two separate statutes: under Title VII and under the Equal Pay Act. There is a reference to a third statute, 42 U.S.C. § 1981. There is only one count in the pleading, however, and the claims, if meant to be more than one, are jumbled together in violation of Fed.R.Civ.P. 10(b). It is apparent that the only claim which could possibly have any substance is that under Title VII.

 2.

 This action by male pursers is related to some extent to an earlier action in this Court commenced by female hostesses against TWA. The earlier action is Maguire and others v. Trans World Airlines, Inc., 70 Civ. 3947. In the Maguire action, an order, filed February 16, 1971, permitted intervention as a plaintiff by Air Line Stewards and Stewardesses Association, Local 550, Transport Workers Union of America, AFL-CIO, sometimes referred to in short as "ALSSA" or "Local 550".

 In April, 1971, De Figueiredo moved to consolidate his action and the Maguire action. TWA opposed the motion to consolidate on the ground that Local 550 was not a party to the De Figueiredo action.

 De Figueiredo then in reply moved to join Local 550 as defendant in his action.

 By order filed February 24, 1972, Local 550 was joined as a party defendant in the De Figueiredo action and the two actions were consolidated for all purposes.

 Much later on May 16, 1975, an order was filed which, among other things, severed the De Figueiredo action (70 Civ. 4421) from the Maguire action (70 Civ. 3947) and since that date the two actions have been separate and independent. Local 550 remains technically a party defendant to the De Figueiredo action. No claim is asserted against it, however, and it has not found it necessary to file an answer.

 3.

 Long ago, defendant TWA moved to dismiss the action because admittedly plaintiff had never filed any charge with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("the EEOC") and this Court was thus without jurisdiction under Title VII. Judge Weinfeld denied the motion on February 11, 1971, with an opinion reported in 322 F. Supp. 1384.

 Some years later, an opinion and decision by Judge Platt in the Eastern District of New York were reported in Bertheas v. Trans World Airlines, Inc., 450 F. Supp. 1069 (E.D.N.Y.1978). The decision of Judge Platt was that in the light of subsequent decisions of the Supreme Court and of our Court of Appeals, the decision of Judge Weinfeld in this action in 1971 was mistaken. An appeal was taken by Bertheas ...


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