United States District Court, E.D. New York
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
WILLIAM F. KUNTZ, II, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
16, 2018, plaintiff Luquana McGriff, appearing pro
se, filed this action alleging employment discrimination
in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964
("Title VII"), 42 U.S.C. §§
2000e-2000e-17, and the Americans with Disabilities Act of
1990 ("ADA"), 42 U.S.C. §§ 12112-12117,
against her employer, the New York City Police Department
("NYPD"), and Richard Napolitano. The Court directs
Plaintiff to hie an amended complaint as set forth below.
employed by the NYPD and currently on disability leave, has
utilized the Court's form for employment discrimination
actions. She has checked off Title VII and the ADA as the
basis for jurisdiction and states that her employer
discriminated against her based on her race, color and
gender. See Compl. at 3, 5, ECF No. 1. In Plaintiffs
statement, she alleges that since August 2015, she has
suffered discrimination, harassment, a hostile work
environment and retaliation by the NYPD, her coworkers, and
Richard Napolitano. Id. at 5-6.
plaintiff alleges that she was denied a transfer and
"different jobs within [her] command," and that her
employer's actions have caused her stress. Compl. at 6-7.
Plaintiff seeks unspecified compensation for pain and
suffering. On April 16, 2018 and May 9, 2018, the Equal
Employment Opportunity Commission issued two separate
Dismissals and Notice of Rights. Id. at 9-10.
complaint must plead "enough facts to state a claim to
relief that is plausible on its face," Bell Atlantic
Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007), and
"allow the court to draw the reasonable inference that
the defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged,"
Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009). The
pleading standard is necessarily "less stringent"
in the context of pro se litigants, whose complaints
the Court is required to construe liberally and interpret as
raising the strongest arguments they suggest Erickson v.
Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94 (2007); Hughes v. Rowe,
449 U.S. 5, 9-10 (1980); Sealed Plaintiff v. Sealed
Defendant #7, 537 F.3d 185, 191 (2d Cir. 2008).
Moreover, at the pleadings stage of the proceeding, the Court
must assume the truth of "all well-pleaded,
nonconclusory factual allegations" in the complaint.
Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum Co., 621 F.3d 111,
124 (2d Cir. 2010) (citing Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678).
A pro se litigant should generally be granted leave
to amend her complaint at least once, "when a liberal
reading of the complaint gives any indication that a valid
claim might be stated," Shomo v. City of New
York, 579 F.3d 176, 183 (2d Cir. 2009) (citafion and
internal quotation marks omitted).
VII prohibits an employer from discriminating against any
individual with respect to "compensation, terms,
conditions or privileges of employment, because of such
individual's race, color, religion, sex or national
origin." 42 U.S.C. § 2000e-2(a)(1). In the Title
VII context, "at the initial stage of the litigation ...
the plaintiff does not need substantial evidence of
discriminatory intent," and need only "sustain a
minimal burden of showing facts suggesting an
inference of discriminatory motivation." Littlejohn
v. City of New York, 795 F.3d 297, 311 (2d Cir. 2015);
see also Vega v. Hempstead Union Free Sck Dist., 801
F.3d 72, 87 (2d Cir. 2015) ("[A] plaintiff must allege
that the employer took adverse action against her at least in
part for a discriminatory reason, and she may do so by
alleging facts that directly show discrimination or facts
that indirectly show discrimination by giving rise to a
plausible inference of discrimination."). "[A]
plaintiff need only give plausible support to, a minimal
inference of discriminatory motivation." Vega,
801 F.3d at 84 (citation and internal quotation marks
omitted). Nevertheless, "a discrimination complaint...
must [still] at a minimum assert nonconclusory factual matter
sufficient to nudge its claims across the line from
conceivable to plausible to proceed." EEOC v. Port
Auth. of N.Y. & N.J., 768 F.3d 247, 254 (2d Cir.
2014) (alterations and internal quotation marks omitted).
even under the most liberal interpretation of Plaintiffs
allegations, she provides no facts that could possibly
connect or link any adverse action to a protected status nor
has Plaintiff provided any facts that would suggest an
inference of discriminatory motivation. At present,
Plaintiffs allegations do not state any facts to support a
violation of Title VII. Although Plaintiff alleges that she
is an African-American woman, she fails to provide facts to
show that she was discriminated because of her race, color or
gender. Plaintiffs claims of discrimination and harassment
are conclusions that need to be supported by facts.
Therefore, Plaintiff fails to state a claim under Title VII
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B). However,
Plaintiff may amend her complaint if she has a good faith
basis to proceed on her Title VII claim.
VII also provides that "it shall be an unlawful
employment practice for an employer to discriminate against
any of his employees ... because he has opposed any practice
made an unlawful employment practice by this subchapter, or
because he has made a charge, testified, assisted, or
participated in any manner in an investigation, proceeding,
or hearing under this subchapter." 42 U.S.C. §
2000e-3(a). In order to establish a primalfacie case
of retaliation, a plaintiff must show: "(1)
participation in a protected activity; (2) that the defendant
knew of the protected activity; (3) an adverse employment
action; and (4) a causal connection between the protected
activity and the adverse employment action."
Littlejohn, 795 F.3d at 315-16 (internal quotation
marks omitted). Protected activity includes actions taken to
report or oppose unlawful discrimination, including
complaints of discrimination to the employer and the filing
and pursuit of administrative charges. See Cruz v. Coach
Stores Inc., 202 F.3d 560, 566 (2d Cir. 2000),
superseded by statute on other grounds, Local Civil
Rights Restoration Act, N.Y.C. Local L. No. 85.
complaints about "just any law" will not suffice;
plaintiff must "have had a good faith, reasonable belief
that [she] was opposing an employment practice made unlawful
by Title VII." Kelly v. Howard I. Shapiro &
Assocs. Consulting Eng\rs, P.C,716 F.3d 10, 14 (2d Cir.
2013) (internal quotation marks and citations omitted). Vague
or ambiguous complaints will not suffice, the employer should
"reasonably have understood[ ] that the plaintiffs
complaint was directed at conduct prohibited by Title
VII." Rojas v. Roman Catholic Diocese of
Rochester,660 F.3d 98, 108 (2d Cir. 2011) (alteration