<img alt="" src="https://secure.imaginativeenterprising-intelligent.com/794699.png" style="display:none;">

Age Discrimination in the Workplace

If you attended our recent webinar on Recruitment Compliance, one of the topics we discussed was avoiding discrimination against older workers.  This topic was in the news recently when a national restaurant chain agreed to settle an Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) lawsuit. 

Seasons 52, a Florida based restaurant chain, will pay $2.85 million to settle a class age discrimination lawsuit brought by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).  This lawsuit sought relief for applicants age 40 and older that had been denied positions at thirty five Seasons 52 restaurants around the country.

Over 135 applicants gave testimony that Season 52 hiring managers asked them their age and made age related comments during interviews including:

  • “Seasons 52 girls are younger and fresh”
  • “Most of the workers are younger” or
  • “We are really looking for someone younger”

The company also hired applicants age 40 and older at a significantly lower rate than applicants under the age of 40.

The consent decree resolving the case will identify and compensate those affected individuals.  In addition, the decree requires significant changes to their recruitment and hiring processes and requires the company to pay for a decree compliance monitor.

HR Compliance

In a similar case settled in April, the Texas Roadhouse restaurant chain agreed to pay $12 million to resolve a class action lawsuit whereby they were accused of engaging in a nationwide pattern of age discrimination in hiring.

The EEOC has shown they are committed to enforcing the federal law that prohibits discrimination against older workers. If you don’t want your employer on the receiving end of an EEOC lawsuit, keep these tips about age discrimination in the workplace in mind. 

  • Review your advertisements for terms that would tend to exclude older applicants, such as “young”, “energetic”, “boy”, “girl”. 
  • Train your managers involved in the hiring process on proper interview questions. 
  • Preparing a standard set of interview questions that are job related is helpful for this process. 
  • Finally, review your rate of hiring for applicants over 40 versus under 40, if there is a significant difference, maybe it is time to take a closer look.

This Age Discrimination in the Workplace blog was written by:
Pam Dettman, HR Consultant at Connor & Gallagher OneSource
Contact Pam at info@GoCGO.com 

Pam 2

Enter Your Email to Receive a New Blog Post Every Thursday