United States District Court, N.D. Alabama, Eastern Division
ANNEMARIE CARNEY AXON UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Campbell alleges that her former employer, KBRwyle Technology
Solutions, LLC (“KBR”), discriminated against her
because she was disabled, interfered with her ability to take
leave under the Family Medical Leave Act
(“FMLA”), and then fired her in retaliation for
taking leave and/or filing an EEOC claim. KBR denies that it
discriminated against Ms. Campbell or that it interfered with
her FMLA rights, and maintains that it had a legitimate,
non-discriminatory reason for terminating her.
Campbell asserts claims against KBR and her former
supervisor, Defendant Fredran Patton, for interference and
retaliation under the FMLA, discrimination and retaliation
under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act
(“ADEA”), and discrimination and retaliation
under the Americans with Disabilities Act
the court is Defendants' motion for summary judgment.
(Doc. 18). As explained below, Ms. Campbell concedes that
Defendants are entitled to summary judgment on her ADEA
claims against both Defendants and her ADA claims against Mr.
Patton. Ms. Campbell's FMLA interference claim fails
because she has not established that she was prejudiced by
any interference with her FMLA rights. Ms. Campbell's
FMLA and ADA retaliation claims fail because she has not
established a prima facie case of retaliation. And,
Ms. Campbell's ADA discrimination claim fails because she
has not established that she is a qualified individual with a
disability. Accordingly, the court WILL
GRANT Defendants' motion for summary judgment.
deciding a motion for summary judgment, the court
“draw[s] all inferences and review[s] all evidence in
the light most favorable to the non-moving party.”
Hamilton v. Southland Christian Sch., Inc., 680 F.3d
1316, 1318 (11th Cir. 2012).
KBR provides support at the U.S.
Army Depot in Anniston, Alabama (the “Depot”) for
the Total Integrated Engine Revitalization
(“TIGER”) Program. (See Doc. 20-1 at
17). Under its contract, KBR supplies parts and engineering
services for AGT1500 engines used in M1 Abrams tanks. (Doc.
20-2 at 13, 17- 18; Doc. 1 at 4). Once the military places an
order and a production schedule is issued, KBR warehouse
supervisors delegate tasks to KBR employees and prioritize
orders based on the team's weekly production forecast.
(Doc. 20-2 at 17; Doc. 20-4 at 34-35). Approximately sixteen
full-time employees staff the warehouse including engineers,
quality controller managers, and order fillers. (Doc. 20-2 at
warehouse at the Depot contains over 16, 000 components that
make up the AGT1500 turbine engine. (Id. at 17-18,
20). Order fillers retrieve parts from storage shelves and
assemble orders on the warehouse production line.
(Id. at 18-19). This process requires order fillers
to transport large components through the facility using golf
carts, forklifts, and wave machines. (Id. at 16-17;
Doc. 20-1 at 26). Order fillers are also tasked with auditing
orders, maintaining inventory, conducting cycle counts, and
dispatching shipments for on time delivery. (Doc. 20-4 at 36;
Doc. 20-1 at 61, 64). Due to the government's continuous
production demands, overtime is “part of the job”
(doc. 20-2 at 24), and order fillers often have to work at
least four hours of overtime every other week. (Doc. 20-2 at
15, 23-24; Doc. 19 at 4 ¶ 17).
2008-2017, Ms. Campbell was employed by KBR as an order
filler. (Doc. 20-1 at 15-16). During the course of her
employment, Ms. Campbell suffered from a number of
psychiatric conditions including bipolar disorder,
generalized anxiety disorder, attention deficit hyperactivity
disorder (“ADHD”), and post-traumatic stress
disorder (“PTSD”). (Id. at 11). Ms.
Campbell was prescribed medications to treat her conditions
and attended regular therapy sessions. (Id. at 18,
February 2016, KBR hired Fredran Patton as the logistics
supervisor for the warehouse. (Doc. 20-4 at 4-5). Mr. Patton
was responsible for the day-to-day operations of warehouse
employees and worked to ensure the team met its monthly
production schedules. (Id. at 28; Doc. 20-3 at 19;
Doc. 20-2 at 17, 19). Mr. Patton was Ms. Campbell's
direct supervisor. (Doc. 20-4 at 10).
April 2016, KBR approved Ms. Campbell's request for
intermittent FMLA leave to attend doctor's appointments
and treat unexpected panic attacks. (Doc. 20-1 at 31-32,
156-61; Doc. 1 at 16, ¶ 86). The leave ran through
October 24, 2016. (Doc. 20-1 at 156). In accordance with
KBR's FMLA policy, Ms. Campbell was required to
“follow normal callout procedures” while on
intermittent leave. (Id. at 159, Doc. 20-4 at 68).
Although the letter granting her intermittent leave gave Ms.
Campbell explicit instructions for handling unforeseeable
leave (doc. 20-1 at 135, 160), Ms. Campbell believed that
even unforeseeable leave required that an employee give 24
hours' notice before taking leave. (Id. at 33).
the intermittent leave period, Ms. Campbell suffered a panic
attack which resulted in a severe migraine. (Doc. 20-4 at
64-65). Although Ms. Campbell had been granted intermittent
leave, she did not take it on this occasion. According to Ms.
Campbell, she was “scared to take [FMLA]” due to
her inability to satisfy KBR's twenty four hour notice
requirement. (Id. at 64-65; Doc. 20-1 at 34).
Instead, Ms. Campbell attended her regularly scheduled shift
and submitted a request to take vacation leave for the
following day, which KBR approved. (Doc. 20-4 at 65).
later, Ms. Campbell requested full-time FMLA leave. (Doc.
20-1 at 35; Doc 20-2 at 53). KBR granted the request. (Doc.
20-1 at 35). While on fulltime leave, Ms. Campbell filed a
complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
(“EEOC”) alleging age and disability
discrimination. (Doc. 20-12 at 2). In her complaint, Ms.
Campbell alleged that Mr. Patton refused to provide her the
necessary training to receive a promotion and that management
harassed her by requiring 24 hours' notice before she
could use her “reasonable accommodation (FMLA) for
[her] disability.” (Id.).
Ms. Campbell exhausted her leave in early September, KBR
granted her requests to extend leave through January 2017.
(Doc 20-1 at 35-36). During this period, Ms. Campbell worked
with the human resource department to develop reasonable
accommodations that would allow her to return to work.
(Id. at 192- 94). On November 30, 2016, Ms. Campbell
submitted a “reasonable accommodation request
form” that included restrictions on her ability to work
overtime and operate motorized vehicles due to her prescribed
medications. (Id. at 198). KBR approved the request
and temporarily assigned Ms. Campbell to complete only the
auditing functions of the order filler position as a means to
satisfy her reasonable accommodation request. (Id.
January 2017 through February 2017, Ms. Campbell's
auditing duties were limited to conducting quality control
checks and ensuring orders were dispatched from the KBR
warehouse on time. (Doc. 20-1 at 64). Because auditing was
not considered a full-time position and was neither a
contract deliverable nor funded position on the contract
(doc. 19 at 14, ¶ 73), KBR and Ms. Campbell met weekly
to discuss how to increase her assigned duties. (Doc. 20-5 at
10). Ultimately, these meetings revealed that the breadth of
duties Ms. Campbell was able to perform in light of her
restrictions was “very limited.” (Id. at
Army's production demands began to steadily increase, KBR
found that the reallocation of Ms. Campbell's overtime
hours was “putting other employees at risk.”
(Doc. 20-2 at 23). KBR management determined that the
“business could no longer support [Ms. Campbell's]
restrictions” and decided to terminate her employment.
(Id. at 20-21). Ms. Campbell separated from
employment on February 8, 2017. (Doc. 20-1 at 70).
months after her termination, Ms. Campbell filed a second
EEOC complaint. (Doc. 20-14 at 2). This complaint alleged
that she was subjected to discrimination and retaliation
because of her disability. (Id.). Specifically, she
alleged that she was “not allowed to seek medical
attention for [her] disability” and was ...