The opinion of the court was delivered by: JOYNER
Plaintiff Christine Rush's action asserts discrimination against her by her former employer, Defendant Scott Specialty Gases, Inc., on the basis of her sex in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. §§ 2000e -- 2000e-17 (1994); the Federal Equal Pay Act, 29 U.S.C. § 206 (1978); the Pennsylvania Human Relations Act, 43 Pa. Cons. Stat. Ann. §§ 951-963 (1991) (PHRA); the Pennsylvania Equal Pay Law, 43 Pa. Cons. Stat. Ann. §§ 336.1--336.10 (1992) and Pennsylvania common law. Both Plaintiff and Defendant have moved for summary judgment on each of the eight counts in the Complaint. We will dispose of both motions in this Memorandum and accompanying Order.
In considering a motion for summary judgment, a court must consider whether the pleadings, depositions, answers to interrogatories, and admissions on file, together with the affidavits, show there is no genuine issue of material fact, and whether the moving party is entitled to judgment as a matter of law. Fed. R. Civ. P. 56(c). The court must determine whether the evidence is such that a reasonable jury could return a verdict for the non-moving party. Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 248, 91 L. Ed. 2d 202, 106 S. Ct. 2505 (1986).
In making this determination, all of the facts must be viewed in the light most favorable to the non-moving party and all reasonable inferences must be drawn in favor of the non-moving party. Id. at 256. Once the moving party has met the initial burden of demonstrating the absence of a genuine issue of material fact, the non-moving party must establish the existence of each element of its case. J.F. Feeser, Inc. v. Serv-A-Portion, Inc., 909 F.2d 1524, 1531 (3d Cir. 1990), cert. denied, 499 U.S. 921, 113 L. Ed. 2d 246, 111 S. Ct. 1313 (1991) (citing Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 323, 91 L. Ed. 2d 265, 106 S. Ct. 2548 (1986)).
Rush was hired by Scott in September, 1991, on a full-time basis to replace a male employee. Although she was hired as a Lab Tech I, the man she replaced was a Lab Tech II, which has a different job description as well as higher salary and benefits. During her time at Scott, Rush was the only female employee in its lab. Rush alleges that she was continuously discriminated against at the lab. This discrimination allegedly took the form of unequal training and promotion as well as a hostile environment.
Rush's evidence is that from the day she was hired, she was consistently given the more routine and mundane tasks to perform and was singled out for discipline. In addition, her evidence is that she was denied equal training opportunities, which limited her opportunity for advancement. For example, in 1990, she avers that she was not told about a class in standard flask making, which had become a prerequisite for promotion. As a result, she did not attend the class. When she learned about the class and that it had been videotaped, she asked to watch the tape and then be considered for promotion. Scott refused and subsequently promoted three of her male co-workers. This evidence is contested by Scott.
In addition, Rush presents evidence that Scott's lab was a hostile work environment for women. She, and others, testified at their depositions that derogatory comments about women in general and her in particular, were constant and came from numerous men at the lab, including and often in the presence of management. Also, more than once, one co-worker apparently told other male co-workers that he wanted to 'take Rush to his van, f *** her and then shoot her in the head so that she could not say what he had done.' Rush and others also testified that a different co-worker groped her on a near-daily basis and often slapped her on the buttocks. This evidence is also contested by Scott.
In 1991, Rush filed a claim with the EEOC concerning the standard flask making class and subsequent failure to promote. This charge was disposed of through a Negotiated Settlement Agreement and Release. Scott agreed to meet with Rush to discuss its policy concerning training and promotion, to provide her with the same formal training and instruction as other employees received and to consider her for a Lab Tech II Analyst position if such a vacancy occurred. In exchange for Scott's satisfactory fulfillment of those promises, Rush agreed not to institute a lawsuit on those charges.
Rush alleges that at the meeting, Scott set much higher prerequisites for her promotion then any of the men were required to, or could, meet. In addition, Scott allegedly promoted a man to Lab Tech II without considering her, and hired a male college student to work one summer as a Lab Tech II. These acts, she alleges, violate the Settlement Agreement.