Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Jenkins v. Winik

United States District Court, D. Massachusetts

March 12, 2018

HECTOR JENKINS, Plaintiff,
v.
JEFFREY WINIK, et al., Defendants.

          MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

          PATTI B. SARIS, CHIEF UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.

         INTRODUCTION

         In his Second Amended Complaint (“SAC”) (Docket No. 54), Plaintiff Hector Jenkins, a former mediator in the Boston Housing Court, brings a Title VII claim against the Housing Court Department of the Trial Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts (“Trial Court”). Jenkins alleges that he faced a hostile work environment in the Trial Court and that the Trial Court discriminated against him on the basis of race and national origin when it terminated his employment in 2016.

         Previously, the Court dismissed with prejudice most of the claims in Jenkins's First Amended Complaint (“FAC”) (Docket No. 24), but granted Jenkins limited leave to amend one Title VII count. See Docket No. 50. Subsequently, Jenkins filed his SAC. The Trial Court then moved to strike the SAC and to dismiss the remaining Title VII claim. See Docket No. 57. The Magistrate Judge recommended that the Trial Court's motion be allowed. See Docket No. 60.

         The Court adopts in part the Magistrate Judge's Report and Recommendation (Docket No. 60), and ALLOWS IN PART and DENIES IN PART Defendants' motion to strike (Docket No. 57).

         BACKGROUND

         I. Factual Background

         The following factual background is taken from the allegations in Jenkins's SAC and must be taken as true at this stage. See Foley v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., 772 F.3d 63, 71 (1st Cir. 2014) .

         Jenkins was a mediator in the Boston Housing Court from 1993 to July 2016, when his employment was terminated. SAC ¶¶ 6, 8. Jenkins is Black and originally from Costa Rica. SAC ¶ 7.

         When Judge Jeffrey Winik, who is White, was appointed to the Housing Court in 1995, Jenkins began to have disagreements with him. SAC ¶ 9. Jenkins complained that Black, Hispanic, and Asian tenants were subjected to forced mediation settlements and agreements approved by Judge Winik. SAC ¶ 10. In 2004, Judge Winik became First Justice of the Boston Housing Court and assumed administrative responsibility for the Housing Court Department in Boston. SAC ¶ 12.

         The Chief Housing Specialist position in Boston was vacant when Judge Winik took over court administrative duties. See SAC ¶ 11. Jenkins and Patrick Yoyo, a Black employee who was the Assistant Chief Housing Specialist at that time, were both interested in the open position. SAC ¶¶ 13-14. However, during the selection process, Judge Winik allegedly indicated that he “did not feel comfortable that [Jenkins or Yoyo] would report violations by another minority manager, ” which Jenkins understood to refer to Magistrate Robert L. Lewis, who is Black. SAC ¶¶ 15-16. Neither Jenkins nor Yoyo got the Chief Housing Specialist job. See SAC ¶¶ 17-18.

         Instead, Michael T. Neville, who is White, was appointed to the position of Acting Chief Housing Specialist in late 2004 and then to permanent Chief Housing Specialist in 2005. SAC ¶¶ 17-18. Jenkins began to lodge complaints with superiors, arguing that non-White applicants were not considered for Neville's position and that the in-house job posting and hiring process “constituted illegal patronage in violation of the Equal Opportunity Employment rules of the Trial Court.” SAC ¶¶ 18-20.

         Jenkins and his new boss Neville did not get along. After Jenkins's complaints, Neville began yelling in Jenkins's face and making comments, such as “you are crazy, ” “we don't want you here, ” and “why don't you quit[?]” SAC ¶ 21. Jenkins continued to complain about mediation results for unrepresented parties and Neville singling Jenkins out for minor infractions at work. See SAC ¶¶ 22-23. By 2008, Jenkins had filed complaints with the Trial Court's entire administrative hierarchy and had been banned from Judge Winik's courtroom. SAC ¶¶ 24-25.

         At multiple points during Barack Obama's presidency, Neville encouraged Jenkins to quit, saying “we don't want you here” and that Jenkins could “complain to [his] boy Obama if [he] want[ed].” SAC ¶ 26. Jenkins perceived these comments to be a racially motivated attack against him, and specifically interpreted Neville's remarks to express that Jenkins “was an unwanted Black foreigner.” SAC ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.