United States District Court, D. Columbia.
For MATTHEW MAGGIO, Plaintiff: Arinderjit Dhali, LEAD ATTORNEY, DHALI PLLC., Washington, DC.
For WISCONSIN AVENUE PSYCHIATRIC CENTER, INC, Defendant: Alan S. Block, BONNER KIERNAN TREBACH & CROCIATA, LLP, Washington, DC.
Before the Court is the defendant's motion to dismiss, or alternatively, the defendant's motion for summary judgment on plaintiff's Matthew Maggio's compliant brought pursuant to the D.C. Human Rights Act (DCHRA), Title VII 42 U.S.C. § 2000e, and the Equal Pay Act (EPA), 29 U.S.C. § 206(d). Maggio filed a complaint alleging sex discrimination, retaliation, and a claim under the Equal Pay Act. For the reasons stated below, defendant's motion to dismiss will be GRANTED.
The relevant facts are as follows: Matthew Maggio, a male, worked at the Psychiatric Institute of Washington (" PIW" ) from July 20, 2009 until December 23, 2011 when PIW terminated his employment for allegedly lacking a valid license. PIW hired Maggio as a Counselor making $38,000 per annum. In October or November 2009, PIW promoted Maggio to the position of Teacher and increased his salary to $42,000 per annum. In January 2010, PIW promoted Maggio to the role of School Director, bringing up his salary to $52,000 per annum.
In order to be certified as a Teacher, a candidate must apply for a substitute teaching license from the District of Columbia Office of the State Superintendent of Education (" OSSE" ). At the time of Maggio's promotion to Teacher, Maggio did not have his teaching license. Maggio
applied for a teaching license, and claims to have had complications with his application in early September 2009. Maggio alleges that he visited OSSE in November or December 2009 at which point he obtained his teaching license, which OSSE backdated to September 21, 2009; it was valid for two years. Additionally, as a requirement for direct patient contact, Directors must obtain a Critical Crisis Management (" CCM" ) license. Maggio obtained this license during his orientation on July 20, 2009 from PIW, and renewed it yearly.
On August 24, 2011, Maggio alleges that he engaged in protected activity by filing a complaint with PIW Human Resources, citing a hostile work environment due to Carol Dejunes, Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of PIW, and Maggio's primary supervisor.
On December 22 and 23, 2011, PIW was audited by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (" JCAHO" ). During the audit, JCAHO discovered that some PIW Directors were not current on their licenses. Maggio was terminated on December 22, 2011 by PIW, allegedly due to a lack of documentation provided to the PIW Human Resources Department by Maggio proving that he started the application process to renew his license. Maggio alleges that he provided a letter and information to Randy Keller, Director of PIW Human Resources, in August and September 2011 stating that he had applied for his teaching license renewal with OSSE and that there was a delay in the renewal due to Maggio not submitting his fingerprints with his initial renewal application.
Maggio first filed a charge of discrimination with the D.C. Office of Human Rights (" DCOHR" ) on May 11, 2012 and cross filed a copy of the charge with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (" EEOC" ). Several months later on November 26, 2012 the EEOC mailed a Notice to Sue by regular U.S. mail to Maggio's permanent address on file: 3032 Rodman Street N.W., Apartment 35, Washington, D.C. 20008. Unbeknownst to the EEOC, Maggio claims he vacated that residence on April 1, 2012, and then resided at 809 Windemere Court, Conway, South Carolina from April 2, 2012 to the present. Maggio stated in his Amended Complaint that he moved to South Carolina to be with his family and his mother, as she was ill. As a result, Maggio claims that he never received the Notice to Sue sent by U.S. regular mail on November 26, 2012. At this time, a copy of the Notice to Sue was not sent to Maggio's counsel.
On June 4, 2013, Maggio's counsel telephoned the EEOC to request a Notice to Sue. The EECO instructed Maggio's counsel to send a written request via facsimile, which counsel satisfied that same day. On June 14, 2013, Maggio's counsel again telephoned the EEOC to check on the status of the Notice to Sue. David Gonzalez, the State and Local Coordinator of the Washington, DC EEOC field office, sent counsel an email on June 17, 2013 requesting a formal letter of representation. Upon receipt of the letter, Gonzalez emailed Maggio's counsel the Notice to Sue on June 17, 2013. Gonzalez informed counsel that the EEOC did not have Maggio's current address on file as they were ...