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June 2, 2000


The opinion of the court was delivered by: McMAHON, District Judge.


Plaintiff Agawukwu Ofudu brought an action for race discrimination and retaliation pursuant to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e et seq., against his former employer, Defendant Barr Laboratories, Inc. Defendant has moved pursuant to Fed. R.Civ.P. 56 to strike portions of Plaintiff's Statement of Facts in support of his opposition to Defendant's motion for summary judgment and for summary judgment. For the reasons that follow, Defendant's motion to strike is granted in part, and its motion for summary judgment is granted.


The following facts are undisputed except where noted.

In an effort to salvage Plaintiff's job, Defendant provided him with additional training. Plaintiff, however, attributes the imposition of this training to racial animosity and describes it as "oppressive." But Plaintiff fails to identify a single racially derogatory remark or other incident to suggest that the training was motivated or characterized by racial animus.

Plaintiff was urged to report any perceived incidents of discrimination to the Human Resources Department. (See Mem. from Jennifer Gillespie to Pl., dated Oct. 16, 1995 Ex. H; see also Higgins' Decl.Ex. A ¶ 11; Ex. I.) Accordingly, he sent a number of memoranda complaining about his treatment, but by his own admission (see Pl.'s Rule 56.1 statement at 39), he impeded Defendant's ability to investigate his complaints by refusing to identify any individuals who perpetrated discriminatory acts against him. (See Pl.'s Dep. Ex. E at 160, Ln. 11 to 161, Ln. 7.) As a result, his complaints were dismissed as unfounded — which Plaintiff believes was a further act of discrimination. (See Pl.'s SOF ¶ 13.)

Ultimately, these remedial measures were to no avail, and, citing the combination of lack of improvement in his job performance, Plaintiff's excessive need for attention and the increasing tension in the workplace as a result of what can only be described as Plaintiff's paranoia, Defendant terminated Plaintiff. (See Baker Decl.Ex. V ¶¶ 4-9.) Again, Plaintiff believes that the complaints about his performance (which he acknowledges) were unwarranted and a pretext for race discrimination, but he does not specify what factors led him to that conclusion — other than the fact that he was black in an overwhelmingly white and Asian work environment, and that three other black professionals who were on staff when he was hired were no longer on staff when he was fired. (See Compl., attached Documentary Evidence in Chronological Order ¶ 33, received June 17, 1998.)


(1) Defendant's Motion to Strike

The Court adopts as its findings of undisputed fact the proposed findings contained in the Rule 56.1 statement filed by Defendant in support of its motion, all of which are supported by the evidence submitted in conjunction therewith.

The Court has reviewed Plaintiff's Rule 56.1 counter-statement. Evidentiary support for the statements contained therein is, for the most part, not identified. The statement contains many conclusory remarks that are simply not consonant with the record. For example, Statement # 6, which says, "Plaintiff received an annual performance review for 1995 and 1996 which were not unsatisfactory," is contradicted by the performance reviews themselves, which indicate that Plaintiff needed to improve in numerous categories. Plaintiff cannot raise a genuine issue of fact by asserting that the contents of a document are other than what they are. Other statements, like # 11, which says, "Plaintiff worked in the midst of several other racial groups and ethnicities who formed and operated along racial lines and ethnicities," or # 13, ". . . when Defendant employer's supervisors attempted to address these unlawful discriminatory conducts, harassment, retaliation, etc., they only had and sought to achieve a narrow goal of sweeping these unlawful conducts under the carpet . . ." are purely conclusory, do not set forth specific facts, and are proffered without any evidentiary support.

Indeed, the Rule 56.1 Statement appears to be the statement of counsel, as it is argumentative without demonstrating any personal knowledge of the matters set forth therein. (I hesitate to use the word "facts" because so many of the entries in the Rule 56.1 Statement are obviously opinions or arguments). Plaintiff has not submitted an affidavit or any documentary evidence except for the conclusory memos he wrote while on the job, which document his complaints, but prove nothing.

Defendant has moved to strike a number of individual entries from the Rule 56.1 Statement on these very grounds. Plaintiff's response to this motion is wholly unsatisfactory, in that it does not cure, or even acknowledge the obvious deficiencies in the Statement. Accordingly, I grant Defendant's motion to the extent of striking the following statements for the reasons set forth in the moving papers or as noted below: Paragraphs 4 (on the ground that the allegedly supporting deposition material is not attached to the papers), 5, 6, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22 (on the ground that the attached deposition testimony, which I have reviewed, does not contain the statements Plaintiff says they contain), 23 and 24 (as supported only by Plaintiff's conclusory statements in the attached exhibits, and not by either sworn testimony or by evidence of specific incidents), 26 (to the extent of the third sentence), 29 (as lacking any supporting citation), 30, 33 and 34 (which deal with the alleged inadequacy of the evidence provided by Defendant and demonstrate an appalling lack of understanding of the summary judgment process by ...

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