By: Daily Record Staff//March 28, 2011
By: Daily Record Staff//March 28, 2011//
U.S. District Court, Western District of New York
Cooper v. The Sutherland Group Ltd.
Background: Plaintiff Anthony Cooper, proceeding pro se, brings this action pursuant to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. §2000(e) et seq.; the Age Discrimination in Employment Act; 42 U.S.C. § 1981; and the New York State Human Rights Law against defendants the Sutherland Group Ltd., Sutherland Global Services, and several individual defendants claiming that the defendants discriminated against him on the basis of his race and age. Cooper, who is African-American, alleges that he and other black employees were treated less favorably than white employees with respect to disciplinary actions, promotions, raises, conditions and terms of employment, and terminations of employment.
He claims that black employees were laid-off prior to white employees being laid off; only white employees received promotions to management; and that sales figures of white employees were routinely manipulated to be more favorable to those employees, whereas sales statistics for black employees were manipulated to reflect poorly on black employees. The plaintiff alleges that he was denied pay raises, promotions and bonuses while employed due to his race and/or age, and that he was fired from his employment because of his race and/or age. The defendant has moved to dismiss.
Ruling: Because the plaintiff chose to proceed administratively with his state law claims, and because the administrative agency reviewing the complaint dismissed the complaint on its merits, the plaintiff may not prosecute those state law claims in this court. The individual defendants are also dismissed from the suit as they cannot be liable under Title VII. The state law claims are dismissed.
The court also grants the defendants’ motion to dismiss the plaintiff’s age discrimination claims against all defendants. The court denies the defendants’ motion to dismiss plaintiff’s Title VII claims of harassment and retaliation based on his race against defendants Sutherland Group and Sutherland Global Services.
Anthony Cooper, plaintiff pro se; Linda T. Prestegaard, of Phillips Lytle LLP, for the defendant