Posted On: June 17, 2009 by

Providence Alaska Medical Center to pay $220,000 To Settle Age Discrimination Lawsuit

Providence Alaska Medical Center will pay $220,000 and revise its policies, provide training on discrimination and retaliation for operating room employees, and file regular reports with the EEOC for monitoring in addition to other injunctive relief as part of a settlement of an age discrimination lawsuit on behalf of five workers laid off and denied rehire because of their age.

The EEOC charged that in February 2005, Providence laid off and refused to rehire longtime employees Gola Anderson, Lawrence Harris, Milagros Lopez, Rebecca Petrie and Canijie Sadiku, following a restructuring of the hospital’s operating room. The five employees had devoted between 11 and 24 years of their careers as surgery aides and anesthesia technicians to Providence and all had hoped to retire from Providence one day. The EEOC said that the five employees, ages between 46 and 56, lost their jobs due to their age, and were replaced by new hires in their twenties and thirties.

"Employers have a duty to ensure that they do not run afoul of the law when they restructure their workforce,” said EEOC San Francisco Regional Attorney William R. Tamayo. “We commend Providence for working cooperatively to resolve this lawsuit and believe that the relief provided in the consent decree will prevent something like this from happening in the future.”

The EEOC brought the lawsuit against Providence after a neutral investigation conducted by EEOC investigator Mercedes Casasola, and after the agency first attempted to a reach voluntary settlement out of court.

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