KU Medical Center to pay settlement for age discrimination

KANSAS CITY, Kan. — The University of Kansas will pay $144,000 to settle a lawsuit filed by an employee who lost his job after reporting that his boss had told managers to focus on hiring younger people over older applicants.

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity, which sued the university in 2019, announced the settlement Friday.

The lawsuit filed in 2014 alleges that the University of Kansas Medical Center’s associate vice chancellor for information resources advised managers in that department to favor recruiting and hiring younger people, particularly millennials. After a desk supervisor in the unit, Jeffrey Thomas, reported his concern, the vice chancellor reorganized the department to eliminate Thomas’ position, the EEOC said.

The EEOC reported its investigation supported Thomas’ allegations and found an instance where a qualified 60-year-old applicant for a computer programmer position was rejected soley because of her age.

The three-year consent decree orders the University of Kansas to pay Thomas’ lost wages and damages. The university and the medical center also must try to prevent discrimination or retaliation against management employees, such as providing training on age discrimination and retaliation and issuing guidance to employees prohibiting age discrimination.


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