Workplace discrimination can take many forms. Many people are quick to assume that cases involving discrimination in the workplace are either gender or race-related. As the generation of baby boomers near retirement age, however, cases of age-related discrimination are becoming increasingly prevalent. A 61-year-old office assistant believes that she was the victim of workplace discrimination when she was abruptly laid off by her Texas employer.
The alleged victim was originally hired by the Texas healthcare facility over 20 years ago. She and her employer maintained a mutually beneficial relationship until a new manager was assigned to the same clinic where Powell was employed. The new manager allegedly began enforcing adverse employment actions that ultimately led to the office assistant’s firing.
The employer has been accused of violations related to the Age Discrimination in Employment Act. The plaintiff seeks to be awarded for a variety of damages including but not limited to lost wages, benefits, liquidated damages, compensatory damages, and court costs; in addition, a jury trial has been requested. The plaintiff will need to demonstrate evidence showing that she was discriminated against and that it was due to her age.
It is not yet certain that the apparent victim will be awarded the damages she seeks. The defendant will likely fight to defend its own position and the litigation could go on for some time. With that being said, it is often important for those who feel they have experienced discrimination to take a stand against those they feel have perpetrated the alleged illegal actions.
Despite measures taken to ensure that older employees do not face workplace discrimination, cases like this one are disappointingly commonplace. Victims of age discrimination often fear that hiring managers will elect to go with younger, less experienced workers because they can often be had for much cheaper. This is one reason that many such victims elect to file civil lawsuits in order to fight the apparent discrimination. Workplace discrimination and, more specifically, age discrimination can take many forms, and, with the age of the Texas employment pool rising, there will likely be more occurrences in the future.
Source: Southeast Texas Record, Office assistant files age discrimination lawsuit, Michelle Keahey, Sept. 12, 2013