Last week, an age discrimination lawsuit was brought against the telecommunications giant. The suit alleges that a controversial hiring policy has disproportionately affected the ability of older workers to find jobs at AT&T. The company has a policy of not re-hiring any workers that have taken a retirement or severance plan from the company.
The EEOC is leading the case against this practice, claiming that this policy of refusing to rehire workers once they were retired unfairly affects older workers, preventing them from ever seeking employment with AT&T in the future. They claim it is unlikely that many younger workers under 40 years old, will be affected by this policy, and instead will work to keep mostly older workers from being employed.
The company, when pressed for comment, has no rationale or reasoning for this program. The company also made no comment pending litigation in the matter, making many wonder what exactly was AT&T trying to accomplish with this policy.
The lawsuit states that over 50,000 employees have retired or separated from the company under this plan, and it is likely a large number of these individuals were older workers.
We’ll keep you updated as this possibly huge lawsuit progresses further.