Thompson v. ABVI Goodwill Services

U.S. DISTRICT COURT
WESTERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK
Employment

New York Law Journal

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Judge Charles Siragusa

After 35 years' employment, Thompson was fired on Jan. 7, 2011. Discussing instances between 2009 and 2011 purportedly indicating age bias, the court dismissed her employment discrimination suit under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act and New York's Human Rights Law. Thompson's complaint did not plead a plausible claim of age discrimination. After finding numerous allegations to be mere conclusions not entitled to the assumption of truth, the court was left to consider a few comments—made over a two-year span by different supervisors, whose ages were not pleaded—which Thompson asserted were indicative of age-based animus. Only one remark—a question in 2009 about when Thompson planned to retire—could reasonably be viewed as pertaining to Thompson's age. Other comments—concerning the quality of Thompson's work, the amount she was paid, and whether she considered full-time work with another employer—did not reasonably suggest age-based discriminatory animus, but rather implied that the quality of Thompson's work did not justify the salary she was paid. Further, there was no plausible nexus between the question about Thompson retiring, and her employment's termination some 20 months later.

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