A former teacher has filed an age discrimination lawsuit against a Brooklyn school where she worked for 16 years, claiming that she was fired and replaced by somebody who was more than two decades her junior. According to the lawsuit, after the woman turned 60, the head of the school “unleashed a torrent of insulting behavior to try to shame (her) into retirement.” Her classroom was moved into a basement section of the building that did not have doors, and her old classroom was given to a younger teacher. The following year, her classroom was moved into the attic of the school, an area that was not very accessible. In addition, her salary was cut from $91,000 to $75,000; and the only other teacher in the school who got a pay cut was also an older faculty member. Two years after the harassment began, the teacher was fired and replaced by a younger teacher. The lawsuit asserts that the school’s actions were unwarranted, as the teacher consistently received positive reviews from her students and colleagues. She is seeking $866,000 in back pay and damages. Age discrimination is Illegal Employers who evaluate workers based on their age rather than their performance and experience are committing unlawful age discrimination. The Age Discrimination and Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA) was designed to protect individuals over forty years old from age discrimination in the workplace. Under the ADEA, employers are prohibited from discriminating against job applicants and employees based on their age with respect to hiring, firing, layoffs, promotions, compensation, benefits, or any other terms or conditions of employment. Age discrimination is Not Always Overt In the lawsuit discussed above, the Brooklyn school allegedly discriminated against the teacher in overt ways by harassing her and ultimately terminating her employment. However, it may not always clear in determining whether you are being unlawfully discriminated against. Employers can discriminate against older workers in subtle ways such as:

  • Treating you differently at work after you turn a certain age.
  • Constantly asking about your retirement plans
  • Providing better job training for younger employees
These examples are a small sample of a wide range of possible discriminatory situations. If you are uncertain about whether your case would be considered valid in court, contact one of our lawyers for advice. Contact Akin Law Group if you have been discriminated against in the Workplace If you have faced discrimination in the workplace, do not hesitate to take action: many claims are time-barred, and will no longer be valid after a period of time. Contact the Akin Law Group PLLC at 866.685.5163 to schedule a free consultation with an experienced employment lawyer.