United States District Court, D. South Carolina, Columbia Division
F. Anderson, Jr. United States District Judge.
plaintiff, Lucy Singleton (“Singleton”), filed
this action pursuant to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of
1964 (“Title VII”), 42 U.S.C. §§ 2000e,
et seq.; the Americans with Disabilities Act
(“ADA”), 42 U.S.C. §§ 12101, et
seq.; and the Family and Medical Leave Act
(“FMLA”), 29 U.S.C. §§ 2601, et
seq., against her former employer, Pilgrim's Pride
Corporation (“Pilgrim's Pride”). In
accordance with 28 U.S.C. § 636(b) and Local Civil Rule
73.02(B)(2), (D.S.C.), the case was referred to the
Magistrate Judge. Thereafter, Pilgrim's Pride filed a
motion for summary judgment. (ECF No. 27).
Magistrate Judge assigned to this action prepared a
thorough Report and Recommendation (“Report”) and
opines that Defendant's motion for summary judgment
should be granted. (ECF No. 48). The Report sets forth, in
detail, the relevant facts and standards of law on this
matter, and this Court incorporates those facts and standards
without a recitation.
filed objections to the Report on April 19, 2017, (ECF No.
53), and Defendant filed a response to those objections on
May 1, 2017. (ECF No. 54). Thus, this matter is ripe for
court is charged with making a de novo determination
of those portions of the Report to which specific objections
are made, and the court may accept, reject, or modify, in
whole or in part, the recommendation of the Magistrate Judge,
or recommit the matter to the Magistrate Judge with
instructions. See 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1).
However, a district court is only required to conduct a
de novo review of the specific portions of the
Magistrate Judge's Report to which an objection is made.
See 28 U.S.C. § 636(b); Fed.R.Civ.P. 72(b);
Carniewski v. W. Virginia Bd. of Prob. & Parole,
974 F.2d 1330 (4th Cir. 1992). In the absence of specific
objections to portions of the Report of the Magistrate, this
Court is not required to give an explanation for adopting the
recommendation. See Camby v. Davis, 718 F.2d 198,
199 (4th Cir. 1983).
Plaintiff has made three specific objections to the Report.
In short, Plaintiff objects to the Magistrate Judge's
recommendation that (1) Singleton's FMLA retaliation
claim should be dismissed, (2) Singleton's ADA
discrimination claim should be dismissed, and (3)
Singleton's Title VII sex discrimination claim should be
dismissed. (ECF No. 53 p. 1).
objects to the Magistrate Judge's recommendation that her
FMLA claims should be dismissed because she “has
established material facts in dispute with evidence showing
that Defendant's purported reason for terminating
Singleton is pretextual.” (ECF No. 53 p. 2). Singleton
asserts that “[p]retext is established by comparators
to Singleton and temporal proximity.” Id.
Singleton alleges that there were similarly situated
employees who were treated differently by Defendant, the
Magistrate Judge correctly concluded that this was not the
case. Here, Singleton alleges that other employees were
labeled as a “Questionable Fit” at the same time
she was, yet they were not terminated at the same time. (ECF
No. 53 p. 2). However, Singleton has failed to produce
evidence showing that these other employees were
“similar in all relevant respects.” Haywood
v. Locke, 387 F.App'x 355, 359 (4th Cir. 2010).
Specifically, Singleton has failed to show that these other
“Questionable Fit” employees were supervisors who
had been placed on a Performance Improvement Plan and were
failing to meet the performance expectations as set out by
the company. Moreover, temporal proximity alone is
insufficient to create a genuine issue of material fact for
trial. Mercer v. Arc of Prince Georges Cty. Inc.,
532 F.app'x 392, 399. Therefore, the Magistrate Judge,
after carefully considering all the evidence presented,
correctly concluded that Singleton's termination was the
result of poor work performance along with a reduction in
force, and these reasons were not a pretext for FMLA
Singleton objects to the Magistrate Judge's findings that
she failed to present a prima facie case that
Defendant failed to accommodate Singleton's disabilities.
Despite this objection, Singleton has failed to identify any
error in the Magistrate Judge's finding that Singleton
was not disabled within the meaning of the ADA.
claimed that she suffered from right knee arthritis and pain
in her right leg, as well as stress and depression from her
employment with Defendant. Consequently, she requested a
demotion to an hourly position. Despite these claims, the
Magistrate Judge correctly concluded that the inability to
work under a particular supervisor does not constitute a
disability as defined in the ADA. (ECF No. 48 p. 13-14).
Additionally, Singleton failed to present evidence
substantiating the allegedly disabling conditions or proving
that her mental condition were more than temporary.
Id. Moreover, Singleton failed to present any
evidence suggesting that she requested the demotion to