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Ruby Tuesday to Pay Half Million Dollar Fine Stemming from Age Discrimination Suit

Restaurant chain Ruby Tuesday will pay $575,000 to settle an age discrimination lawsuit filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). The lawsuit claimed that five locations in Western Pennsylvania and Ohio discriminated against potential applicants over the age of 40.  

The company told the Columbus Dispatch that it settled the suit to “reduce disruption and avoid litigation costs.” In settling, Tennessee-based Ruby Tuesday will agree to pay the fine but will admit no wrongdoing. The company will have to end their practice of discrimination and:

• Implement numerical goals for hiring and recruitment of job applicants age 40 and older at the affected locations;

• Review its job advertisements to make certain they do not violate the ADEA’s prohibitions against age discrimination;

• Conduct audits, including random reviews of hiring decisions, to ensure non-discrimination and compliance with the terms of the consent decree;

• Evaluate the job performance of people with hiring authority for the six stores named in the consent decree and set their compensation (including bonuses), in part, based on their degree of success in helping Ruby Tuesday achieve its goals of ensuring that its recruitment and hiring practices provide equal employment opportunities for people who are 40 or older;

• Designate a decree compliance monitor for oversight of compliance with the requirements of the ADEA and the terms of the consent decree;

• Provide extensive training on the requirements of the ADEA and the consent decree to the decree compliance monitor, human resources personnel and hiring authorities of the six stores named in the consent decree; and

• Report to the EEOC and keep records about its hiring practices and compliance with the consent decree.

EEOC lawyer Debra Lawrence said of the settlement:

“We are pleased that Ruby Tuesday worked with us to craft a comprehensive settlement that will benefit all employees and applicants.  In addition to the monetary compensation for the class members, the extensive training and equitable measures are designed to improve recruitment and hiring of older workers and protect all applicants from age discrimination.”

EEOC General Counsel David Lopez added:

“This case demonstrates the agency’s ongoing commitment to challenge discriminatory barriers to hiring.  Vigorous law enforcement efforts on behalf of older workers are critical to the EEOC’s mission to eradicate barriers to employment.”

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