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Restaurant chain settles age discrimination suit

Some New Yorkers who are older than 40 experience age discrimination at their jobs or when they apply for new positions. Discrimination against workers and applicants who are older than 40 based on their ages is prohibited under state and federal law. According to news sources, the Seasons 52 restaurant chain, which is owned by Darden Restaurants, recently settled an age discrimination lawsuit with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission of almost $3 million for discriminating against older workers at 35 restaurant locations across the country.

The EEOC reports that Seasons 52 engaged in a policy of rejecting most applicants who were older than age 40. More than 130 different applicants told the EEOC that the chain regularly used discriminatory language. One manager told the EEOC that the chain did not hire "old white guys."

The settlement will be paid out to the applicants of Season 52 who were subjected to age discrimination. The restaurant chain will also be required to make changes to its hiring practices and to hire a monitor to ensure that the chain is adhering to the settlement terms. In addition to Seasons 52, Darden Restaurants also owns the Olive Garden, Longhorn Steakhouse and Yard House restaurant chains.

People who have been discriminated against based on their age or other protected statuses may benefit by talking to experienced employment law attorneys. Lawyers may assist their clients with recovering damages if the discrimination that they experienced was prohibited. The lawyers may also help their clients with filing discrimination charges with the EEOC and the corresponding state agency. If they are granted leave to sue, the attorneys might file discrimination lawsuits against the employers in court.

Source: FOX News, "'Old white guys' weren't hired, so restaurant chain to pay $3M in age bias settlement," Gregg Re, May 4, 2018.

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