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Emeronye v. CACI International, Inc.

United States District Court for the District of Columbia
141 F. Supp. 2d 82 (2001)


Charity Emeronye (plaintiff), a black, Nigerian woman who possessed a law degree from the University of London and an L.L.M. degree from DePaul University, was hired as a paralegal in August 1997 by CACI International, Inc. (CACI) (defendant). Attached to Emeronye’s offer letter was CACI’s standard, two-page employment agreement, which Emeronye signed. The agreement included a provision requiring that all disputes related to Emeronye’s employment with CACI, including claims of discrimination based on federal or state law, be subject first to mediation and, if that failed, to binding arbitration. Emeronye did not recall reading or signing the agreement, nor did anyone explain or point out the arbitration provision to her. Over time, Emeronye perceived that she was being denied promotions and otherwise treated unfairly on account of her race and/or national origin. In August 1999, Emeronye filed a complaint with CACI’s Equal Employment Opportunity Office. In September 2000, Emeronye filed a lawsuit against CACI, alleging discrimination and retaliation in violation of her civil rights under 42 U.S.C. § 1981 and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. CACI moved to dismiss on the ground that Emeronye was obligated to submit her claims to mediation and binding arbitration.

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