Hostile Work Environment Claim Dismissed; Discrimination Based on “Educational Background” Not Actionable Under Title VII

In Henry v. McDonald, 2021 WL 1309729 (E.D.N.Y. March 31 2021), the court, inter alia, dismissed plaintiff’s hostile work environment claim asserted under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

From the decision:

Plaintiff has failed to present evidence that Defendant discriminated against him based on any protected characteristic to support his hostile work environment claim. Initially, Plaintiff acknowledges that no Clinic worker made discriminatory comments towards him. See, Exhibit 3 to Cho Aff. at 118, Dkt. Entry No. 76-1. Plaintiff alleges that Benjamin subjected him to a hostile work environment by harassing and bullying him and spreading “gossip” and “rumors” about his character and performance. Compl. at 7. He also claims that Benjamin accused him improperly of sexual harassment. Id. at 8. However, Plaintiff explained in his deposition that Benjamin discriminated against him based on his “different educational background” and for no other reason. Exhibit 2 to Cho Aff. at 79-80, Dkt. Entry No. 76-1. Educational background is not a protected characteristic under Title VII. See, Glasgow v. CNYRTA/Centro, Inc., 2018 WL 5660407, at *4 (E.D.N.Y. July 12, 2018). Accordingly, the hostile work environment claim is dismissed.

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