The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed a lawsuit this week alleging age discrimination at Banner Good Samaritan Medical Center in Phoenix.
According to the suit, Banner Good Samaritan violated the Age Discrimination in Employment Act by terminating husband and wife, Fernando and Maria Rosales, both 61 at the time, and replacing them with younger workers.
The suit, filed in U.S. District Court for the District of Arizona, alleges Banner Health terminated the couple “due to ageism.”
Both employees “had performed their jobs satisfactorily and had no reason to believe they would be fired,” according to the commission,
The act prohibits employers from discriminating against employees because of their age if they are 40 or older.
The commission is seeking monetary relief for the Rosaleses and an end to any discriminatory employment practices by Banner Health.
Banner Health had no comment on the suit, said spokesman Bill Byron.
“Forty percent of Arizonans are 40 years of age or older,” said Chester Bailey, the commission’s Phoenix district director.
“Employers must understand that is against the law to terminate an older employee without just cause and replace them with younger workers.”