Employment Law/Age discrimination
Hello and thanks for taking the time to help me.
I am 61 years old. Recently a new manager was brought in to head the marketing dept. that I work in as a graphic artist. My immediate boss who was in charge of marketing was essentially stripped of his role of marketing director. At the the same time a freelance graphic artist was brought on to help me. He is 49 years old. During a strategy meeting with my immediate boss and myself, the new manager brought up the subject of "threats" to the marketing department. Then he said: we're all getting older, himself included. Then he talked about bringing in new people to the department.
He is in his 50's, my immediate boss ( who they've stripped of power) is 60.
Then I found out that the freelancer went to lunch with the new manager and was told that he, the freelancer, will be getting hired and put in charge of graphics. My immediate boss will be put on the road to visit our sales reps all over the country. As for me they'll let me stay till retirement but I am now doing low end work and the freelancer is getting the good work. Or i could get moved to another department. Who told me this? The freelancer told me after I questioned him and pulled the info out of him.
And this is supposed to happen at the end of this year 2014.
Is this a case of age discrimination? Do I have any recourse if this comes to pass?
Robert - According to federal law, age discrimination covers individuals from age 40 and up. Your new coworkers all are older than the minimum for the Age Discrimination laws, so it would be difficult to argue that your company is discrimination on the basis of age. In addition, age discrimination cases are notoriously hard for plaintiffs to win. You have no right to get the better work in your department, and it sounds as if you will keep your job. I cannot see an attorney agreeing to represent you on a contingency fee basis because of these factors, and paying an hourly rate would be prohibitive for most working people. In your situation, and in the job market we have now, I'd probably keep quiet and be glad they were letting me keep my job until retirement. That may sound harsh, but your alternative is to have to seek a new job at age 61, an almost impossible task.