According to a statement from the U.S Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), Ruby Tuesday will pay $575,000 and provide significant equitable relief to settle a class age discrimination lawsuit filed by the agency in the U.S. District Court of the Western District of Pennsylvania.
In the suit, EEOC v. Ruby Tuesday Inc. (Civil Action No. 09-1330), the EEOC alleges that Ruby Tuesday engaged in a pattern or practice of age discrimination against job applicants who were 40 years of age or older. These practices took place at six of the chain’s restaurants, located in West Mifflin, Greensburg, Altoona, Du Bois and Indiana, Pennsylvania, and in Beachwood, Ohio, and were in violation of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA). The chain also failed to preserve employment records, including employment applications, as required by the ADEA and EEOC regulations.
In addition to the $575,000 in monetary relief, the three-and-one-half-year consent decree resolving the lawsuit enjoins Ruby Tuesday from engaging in future age discrimination or retaliation and provides substantial nonmonetary relief at the affected Ruby Tuesday locations.
The chain is also required to:
- Implement numerical goals for hiring and recruitment of job applicants ages 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 nondiscrimination and compliance with the terms of the consent decree;
- Evaluate the job performance of people with hiring authority for the six locations 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; and
- Provide extensive training on the requirements of the ADEA and the consent decree to the decree compliance monitor, human resources (HR) personnel and hiring authorities of the six stores named in the consent decree.
The company will also report to the EEOC and keep records about its hiring practices and compliance with the consent decree.