United States District Court, D. Massachusetts
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER ON DEFENDANT'S MOTION TO DISMISS AND PLAINTIFF'S MOTION TO APPOINT COUNSEL
F. DENNIS SAYLOR, IV, District Judge.
This is an action alleging unlawful employment discrimination and retaliation. Plaintiff Amada Gregory, appearing pro se, has brought suit against defendants YWCA Haverhill, Inc., and four of its employees. The complaint appears to allege claims of harassment, discrimination, and retaliation on the basis of race and ethnicity.
On November 2, 2011, Gregory filed a complaint with the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination, alleging she was being harassed and treated unfairly by YWCA. On February 29, 2012, the MCAD dismissed the complaint. The dismissal was affirmed on December 21.
In June 2012, Gregory filed a second complaint with the MCAD, alleging that YWCA had retaliated against her for filing her first complaint. It is not clear whether that complaint is still pending.
On March 27, 2013, Gregory filed the complaint in this case. The complaint appeared to allege claims of harassment, discrimination, and retaliation on the basis of race and ethnicity.
On July 16, 2013, the Court ordered Gregory to file an amended complaint that comported with the pleading requirements of Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a). She was also ordered to provide evidence (specifically, her right-to-sue letter from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission) that she exhausted her administrative remedies before filing her complaint.
On October 22, 2013, Gregory filed an amended complaint. The amended complaint is nearly identical to her original complaint, but includes additional information about each defendant. In substance, the amended complaint alleges that Gregory was subjected to harassment in her workplace by the office manager and other employees of YWCA based on her race, as well as unlawful retaliation. It also states that the claims are brought "under USC 442." (Am. Compl. ¶ 1).
On May 19, 2014, defendants moved to dismiss the amended complaint. They contend that it fails to meet the pleading requirements of Rule 8(a) and fails to state a claim under Rule 12(b).
On June 3, 2014, plaintiff filed a motion for appointment of counsel.
A. Motion to Dismiss
Rule 8 requires that a complaint must contain (1) "a short and plain statement of the grounds for the court's jurisdiction"; (2) "a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief; and (3) "a demand for the relief sought." Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a). A pleading that violates the principles of Rule 8 may be struck "within the sound discretion of the court." Newman v. Massachusetts, 115 F.R.D. 341, 343 (D. Mass. 1987) (internal quotation and citation omitted).
While it is far from clear, the amended complaint appears to allege claims of employment discrimination and retaliation in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, under which it is unlawful for an employer to discriminate against an employee based on his or her "race, color, religion, sex, or national origin." 42 U.S.C. § 2000e-2(a). It is also unlawful for an employer "to discriminate against any [individual]... ...