Company Fired Qualified Employee Because She was Too Old, Federal Agency Charged
WEST PALM BEACH - M1 5100 Corporation, doing business as Jumbo Supermarket, Inc., violated federal law by terminating a qualified employee because of her age, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) charged in a lawsuit filed today.
According to the EEOC's suit, the 57-year-old employee arrived to work for her regularly scheduled shift as Cook Manager at a Jumbo Supermarket located in Lake Worth, Fla. and discovered the store had hired her replacement-someone approximately twenty years younger than she. When she was terminated, the general manager commented, "Look old lady, we have to give opportunities to new people, old lady . . . it is time for you to rest."
Throughout her employment at Jumbo Supermarket, Inc., the wrongfully terminated employee performed her job well and never received any disciplinary write-ups for her work performance.
Terminating an employee because of age violates the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA). The EEOC filed suit (EEOC v. M1 5100 Corp., Case No.9:19-cv-81320) in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida only after exhausting its conciliation efforts to reach a voluntary pre-litigation settlement. The agency is seeking back pay and liquidated damages for the aggrieved employee, as well as appropriate injunctive relief to prevent any further discriminatory practices.
"The ADEA protects older workers from being forced out by employers because of their age," said Robert E. Weisberg, regional attorney for the EEOC's Miami District Office. "The EEOC will continue to fight for the right of employees to not have their employment ended because they reach a certain age."
Michael Farrell, director of the EEOC's Miami District Office, added, "Older individuals are frequently staying longer in their careers or seeking part-time employment in another career. Too often, employers simply fire these workers based upon misconceptions and stereotypes, rather than focusing on the wealth of positive assets older workers can bring to the table."
The EEOC advances opportunity in the workplace by enforcing federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. More information is available at www.eeoc.gov. Stay connected with the latest EEOC news by subscribing to our email updates.