Section 1981 Retaliation Claim Sufficiently Alleged; Termination Two Weeks After HR Complaint Plausibly Indicated Causation

In Osuan v. City of New York et al, 2019 WL 2544866, at *4 (S.D.N.Y. June 20, 2019), the court, inter alia, denied defendants’ motion to dismiss plaintiff’s claim of retaliation under 42 U.S.C. 1981.

From the decision:

Here, Osuan lodged a complaint with human resources about Martin’s behavior and was terminated without explanation only two weeks later. Such close proximity satisfies the temporal connection standard. See, e.g., Zann Kwan v. Andalex Grp. LLC, 737 F.3d 834, 845 (2d Cir. 2013) (holding a three-week period sufficient to show temporal proximity); Kirkweg, 2013 WL 1651710, at *5 (explaining that even a two- to three-month gap may suggest causation at the pleading stage). And accepting all pleaded facts as true, Osuan had no disciplinary history that would otherwise explain her supervisor’s decision. Thus, the allegations in the Complaint are sufficient to “nudge[ ] [Osuan’s] claims across the line from conceivable to plausible,” Twombly, 550 U.S. at 570, and Defendants’ motion to dismiss Osuan’s § 1981 retaliation claim is denied.

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