United States District Court, D. Arizona
HONORABLE STEVEN P. LOGAN UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
the Court is Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment.
(Doc. 71) For the following reasons, the Court will grant the
was employed by Defendant as a “Systems Administrator
II” from 2013 to 2017. (Docs. 1 at 1; 72 at 1) In late
2015, Defendant requested that its employees participate in a
health assessment program, which included a biometric
screening to test for height, weight, body mass index, blood
pressure, blood glucose, and cholesterol levels. (Docs. 1 at
2; 72-2 at 28) Defendant hired a third-party vendor, Health
Fitness, to administer the testing. (Docs. 72 at 2; 72-2 at
27) Plaintiff participated, and his biometric results were
flagged as “high risk” for prostate cancer. (Doc.
1 at 2) Health Fitness recommended that Plaintiff follow-up
to receive additional testing. (Docs. 1 at 3; 72-2 at 54,
58-59) Plaintiff underwent additional testing in February and
March of 2016. (Doc. 1 at 3) In order to undergo the testing,
Plaintiff requested time off from work in March 2016. (Doc.
72-2 at 48-50) Plaintiff did not tell Defendant that he was
undergoing cancer testing. (Doc. 72-2 at 48-50) Instead,
Plaintiff simply told his supervisor that he was
“sick.” (Doc. 72-2 at 48-50)
January of 2016-unbeknownst to Plaintiff-Defendant began a
plan to reduce its operating costs through a reduction in its
workforce. (Doc. 72 at 4) After looking at past performance
reviews for everyone in Plaintiff's department, Defendant
decided to terminate Plaintiff and one other employee. (Doc.
72 at 4-5) Defendant terminated the other employee during the
last week of March, but Plaintiff was out “sick”
at that time. (Doc. 72 at 5) A few days later, on April 4,
2016, Defendant informed Plaintiff of his termination over
the phone. (Doc. 72 at 5) Plaintiff received a diagnosis of
prostate cancer on April 27, 2016. (Doc. 72-2 at 55)
filed a charge of discrimination with the Equal Employment
Opportunity Commission on August 11, 2016. (Docs. 1 at 8-9;
72-2 at 85) Subsequently, Plaintiff filed the Complaint and
commenced this action on November 27, 2017. (Doc. 1) In count
one, Plaintiff alleges that Defendant unlawfully terminated
him in violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act
(“ADA”), 42 U.S.C. § 12101 et seq.
In count two, Plaintiff alleges that Defendant unlawfully
discriminated against him based on his genetic information in
violation of the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act
(“GINA”), 42 U.S.C. § 2000ff et
seq. In count three, Plaintiff alleges that Defendant
unlawfully discriminated against him based on his age in
violation of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act
(“ADEA”), 29 U.S.C. § 621 et seq.
In count four, Plaintiff alleges that Defendant unlawfully
interfered with his rights under the Family and Medical Leave
Act (“FMLA”), 29 U.S.C. § 2601, et
seq. Defendant answered the Complaint on March 26, 2018.
April 5, 2019, Defendant filed a Motion for Summary Judgment.
(Doc. 71) The Court issued an Order on April 15, 2019,
notifying Plaintiff of the Motion and specifically
instructing Plaintiff to respond by May 15, 2019. (Doc. 74)
Plaintiff did not file the Response until October 8, 2019.
(Doc. 92) Defendant filed a Motion to Strike Plaintiff's
Response. (Doc. 95) The Court granted the Motion and struck
Plaintiff's untimely Response. (Doc. 98)
Standard of Review
viewing the evidence in the light most favorable to the
non-moving party, summary judgment is appropriate when there
is no genuine dispute as to any material fact and the movant
is clearly entitled to prevail as a matter of law.
Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(e); Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477
U.S. 317, 322-23 (1986). A fact is “material”
when, under the governing substantive law, it could affect
the outcome of the case. Anderson v. Liberty Lobby,
Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 248 (1986). A genuine dispute of
material fact arises “if the evidence is such that a
reasonable jury could return a verdict for the nonmoving
party.” Id. “If the evidence is merely
colorable, . . . or is not significantly probative, . . .
summary judgment may be granted.” Id. at
249-50 (citation omitted).
party seeking summary judgment bears the initial burden of
informing the court of the basis for its motion and
identifying the portions of the pleadings, depositions,
interrogatories, admissions, or affidavits, if any, which it
believes demonstrate the absence of any genuine issue of
material fact. Celotex, 477 U.S. at 323. The moving
party need not disprove matters on which the opponent has the
burden of proof at trial. Id. When a party fails to
respond to a motion for summary judgment, the moving party
still has an “affirmative duty under Rule 56 to
demonstrate its entitlement to judgment as a matter of
law.” Martinez v. Stanford, 323 F.3d 1178,
1182 (9th Cir. 2003).
asserts that the Court is required to analyze Plaintiff's
ADA, GINA, and ADEA discrimination claims under the
burden-shifting framework outlined in McDonnell Douglas
Corp. v. Green, 411 U.S. 792 (1973). (Doc. 71 at 9)
The framework generally applies to a plaintiff who alleges
retaliatory conduct by his or her employer after the
plaintiff participated in a protected activity. See
Reeves v. Sanderson Plumbing Prod., Inc., 530 U.S. 133,
142 (2000). The framework is also appropriate when a
plaintiff attempts to establish a claim of discrimination by
using only circumstantial evidence. Id. at 141. The
Court finds that the record in this case only contains
circumstantial evidence to support Plaintiff's various
claims of discrimination. Therefore, the Court will apply
McDonnell Douglas to analyze whether the record
supports a genuine dispute of material fact for each
discrimination claim. See Smith v. Noah Webster Basic
Sch., 389 Fed.Appx. 698, 699 (9th Cir. 2010) (evaluating
an ADA claim based on circumstantial evidence of
discrimination under McDonnell Douglas);
Diaz, 521 F.3d at 1207 (evaluating an ADEA claim
based on circumstantial evidence of discrimination under
McDonnell Douglas); Punt v. Kelly Serv.,
No. 14-cv-02560-CMA-MJW, 2016 WL 67654, at *12-13 (D. Colo.
Jan. 6, 2016) (evaluating a GINA claim based on
circumstantial evidence of discrimination under McDonnell
prevail on an ADA claim of unlawful discharge, the plaintiff
must establish a prima facie case by showing that: (1) he is
a disabled person within the meaning of the statute; (2) he
is a qualified individual with a disability; and (3) he
suffered an adverse employment action because of his
disability.” Hutton v. Elf Atochem N. Am.,
Inc., 273 F.3d 884, 891 (9th Cir. 2001) (citation
omitted). “It follows that the plaintiff must show that
the defendant had knowledge of ...