New Mexico Firm Settles Age Discrimination Lawsuit

April 10, 2013 ( – Western Energy Services of Durango, Inc. (WESODI) agreed to pay $90,000 and furnish other relief to settle an age discrimination lawsuit.

According to the lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), two journeymen linemen electricians, Dennis Thomas (then age 61) and Eric Camron (then age 72), were referred for WESODI job openings in northern New Mexico by the IBEW local union in Albuquerque, but the company rejected the referrals because of the men’s ages. In each instance, after the referrals were refused, two men in their mid-20s were awarded the jobs.

Camron and Thomas, as well as the local union’s dispatcher, alleged that WESODI’s line superintendent stated that he was rejecting the referrals because of their ages.

In addition to the monetary settlement, WESODI, based in Durango, Colorado, has agreed to post its anti-discrimination policy, provide training about anti-discrimination laws to its employees and managers, and to make periodic reports to the EEOC.

The EEOC filed suit in U.S. District Court for the District of New Mexico (EEOC v. Western Energy Services of Durango, Inc., 11-cv-00866 PJK-CG [D.N.M.]) after first attempting to reach a pre-litigation settlement through its conciliation process.

In fiscal year 2012, the EEOC received 22,857 age discrimination charges nationwide, which accounted for 23% of the total charges it received that year.