“Private employers need to understand that mandatory retirement policies run afoul of the ADEA and will be met with challenge,” says Kenneth Bird, regional attorney for the EEOC’s Indianapolis District Office.
The district court had previously ruled against the plaintiffs’ motion for a preliminary injunction, finding AARP did not prove irreparable harm to its members was likely; yet in the end AARP has prevailed in its challenge.
The agency claims that the production superintendent who terminated the foreman also made ageist comments regarding the foreman’s co-workers, including repeated remarks about being "too old to do the job."
As people are living longer and wanting to work longer, witnesses at an EEOC meeting about the ADEA made suggestions about how regulators and employers can reduce age discrimination and help people work longer.
Among other things, the lawsuit says the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission failed to adequately justify its reversal of position and ignored comments on the proposed rules that expressed concern.
The court found the program was subject to ADA scrutiny, but also that the wellness plan was lawful under the ADA because it concluded the employee's decision whether to participate was voluntary under that statute.
Under final wellness program rules, employees must receive a notice describing what information will be collected as part of the wellness program, who will receive it, how it will be used, and how it will be kept confidential.