Law Offices of Dan A. Atkerson

Is Age Discrimination a Problem Old as Time?

By Dan Atkerson on March 28, 2016

Happy Mature BusinesswomanAccording to an article in The New York Times, two former professors at Ohio State University have officially filed claims of age discrimination against the school. Both women say that they, and other employees, have been subjected to workplace discrimination over the past few years.

The plaintiffs both argue that they loved their positions at the University and that they had once been treated as family, but as the years went on, they noticed that they were looked over for promotions in favor of younger applicant more and more.

In 2013, the University hired a new department head who quickly instated a culture of discrimination and abuse towards older employees, referring to them as “dead wood,” “grim reaper,” and “millstones around my neck.”

The plaintiffs, along with several other older employees, have since left or been forced out of the school, which prompted the women to file formal complaints against the university as well as an age discrimination lawsuit.

Combating an Issue Old as Time

The Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 was created to prevent such acts of abuse, but has done relatively little. Due to numerous loopholes and counterproductive precedents set by the Supreme Court, proving an age discrimination case, and recovering damages, can be extremely difficult.

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has estimated that as many as 21,000 complaints of age discrimination are filed each year alone.

In a survey conducted by AARP, 1,500 older employees were asked about discrimination in the workplace. More than 90 percent of those surveyed said that discrimination based on age was “very” or “somewhat” common.

In order to fight back, speak with an employment lawyer about filing an age discrimination lawsuit. Due to the complexity and difficulty involved in age discrimination cases, it is nearly impossible to present an effective case without the assistance of an employment law attorney.

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