personal animosity of fellow employees toward the plaintiff. Price, 790 F. Supp. at 100.
The employee-Plaintiffs in this case base their intentional infliction of emotional distress claims on the alleged harassment and intimidation by the defendants. The basic motivation alleged was racial discrimination. The employee-Plaintiffs have failed to establish personal animosity on the part of the third parties. The alleged "conspiracy" was to exclude blacks, as a class, from leadership or executive positions. The individual defendants are alleged to have promoted the policies, but nowhere are there any averments that they themselves had a personal animosity towards the particular employees in this case. The alleged discrimination is against black workers in general and the fact that there are five black employee-Plaintiffs named in this suit confirms the notion that the third-parties' motivation was not personal. The employee-Plaintiffs have failed to establish the applicability of the third-party exception and, therefore, the intentional infliction of emotional distress claim is barred by the WCA and will be dismissed.
In addition to the afore-mentioned claims, at Count VI of the plaintiffs' complaint Sandra, Jordan, and Nathaniel White have endeavored to state a claim against RHD, Moyer and Fishman under a negligence theory. In furtherance of this cause of action, plaintiffs allege that as a result of the said defendants' "wrong and intentional actions... directed at Sandra White" which they "knew or should have known...would cause great anxiety and fear and could result in life and health threatening reactions in a pregnant women (sic)...the plaintiff Jordan White was born with permanent mental and physical injuries..."
It is axiomatic that to state a cause of action under Pennsylvania law for negligence, the basic elements of that tort must be pled. Those elements are : (1) the existence of a duty or obligation, recognized by the law, requiring the actor to conform to a certain standard of conduct for the protection of others against unreasonable risks; (2) a failure on the part of the actor to conform to the required standard; (3) a reasonably close causal connection between the conduct and the resulting injury; and (4) actual loss or damage resulting to the interests of another. Fennell v. Nationwide Mutual Fire Insurance Company, 412 Pa. Super. 534, 603 A.2d 1064, 1066-1067 (1992); Casey v. Geiger, 346 Pa. Super. 279, 499 A.2d 606, 612 (1985), allocatur denied, 516 Pa. 638, 533 A.2d 710 (1987). In reviewing the complaint in the case at bar, we observe that it is devoid of allegations concerning the existence of a duty owed by the defendants to the plaintiffs and that there does not exist a reasonably close causal connection between the defendants' alleged actions and the mental and physical injuries sustained by the plaintiffs. Indeed, it appears to this court that the plaintiffs are trying to plead a claim for "negligent termination of employment." Such a cause of action, however, does not exist under the law of Pennsylvania. See: Gaiardo v. Ethyl Corp., 697 F. Supp. 1377, 1384-1385 (M.D.Pa. 1986). What's more, even if the plaintiffs had succeeded in pleading a negligence claim against these defendants and as discussed above, such a cause of action would be barred by the provisions of the Pennsylvania Workmen's Compensation Act. See,e.g.: 77 P.S.§ 481. Count VI shall therefore be dismissed.
VII. State Constitutional Claims
In their complaint, the employee-Plaintiffs also allege that Defendants deprived them of their rights under Article 1, Section 1 of the Pennsylvania Constitution. Article 1, Section 1 is intended to provide individuals with protection from the Commonwealth's interference with an individual's rights. Although Plaintiffs attempt to establish state action because of RHD's alleged use of "taxpayers money," this does not rise to the level of state action. Plaintiffs have not pled any facts which suggest interference by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania with the individual rights of Plaintiffs. Therefore, Plaintiffs' direct state constitutional claims will be dismissed.
VIII. Standards Governing Motions for a More Definite Statement
A defendant can request a more definite statement of the complaint in order to enable him to prepare his answer. A court may grant a Rule 12(e) motion when the pleading is "so vague or ambiguous that the opposing party cannot respond, even with a simple denial, in good faith or without prejudice to himself." 5A Charles A. Wright and Arthur R. Miller, Federal Practice & Procedure, Civil 2d, § 1376 (1990); Blue Line Coal Co., Inc. v. Equibank, 683 F. Supp. 493, 498 (E.D.Pa. 1988). A pleading must be sufficient enough to enable the court to make out the potential viable legal theories upon which the complaint is based. 5A Wright & Miller, § 1376 at 577. However, if the granting of a Rule 12(e) motion increases the time and effort to refine the pleadings without circumscribing the scope of discovery or defining the issues, then such a motion is not appropriate. Id. at 578.
In this case, the issues have already been defined to § 1981 claims against Defendant RHD and a possible Title VII claim by Plaintiff Sandra White. This Court is satisfied that Plaintiffs have sufficiently pled facts to establish a prima facie case under § 1981 against RHD. Therefore, Defendants' Motion for a More Definite Statement will be denied.
An appropriate order follows.
AND NOW, this 31st day of January, 1994, upon consideration of Defendants' Motion to Dismiss the Plaintiff's Complaint or, in the Alternative, for a More Definite Statement, it is hereby ORDERED that the Motion to Dismiss is GRANTED IN PART and DENIED IN PART and Counts IV, VI, VII and VIII and the claims raised under the Pennsylvania Constitution in Counts II and III of the Complaint are DISMISSED.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that Counts III and V are DISMISSED only as against Defendants Fishman and Moyer with leave to Plaintiff White to amend Count III as discussed in the foregoing Memorandum Opinion. Plaintiff Hicks' Title VII claim is DISMISSED from Count I of the complaint. In all other respects, the Motion to Dismiss is DENIED.
IT IS STILL FURTHER ORDERED that the defendants' Motion for a More Definite Statement is DENIED.
BY THE COURT:
J. CURTIS JOYNER, J.