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3M workers seek class certification for age discrimination case

Finding a career that is long-term and enjoyable is very desirable for Minnesota residents. This is not an easy goal to accomplish, however, so when someone locates such an occupation they usually hope to maintain the job until they decide to retire. This is not often the case and is especially difficult for older employees who are currently trying to keep their jobs. With new technology and younger workers being hired at a lower salary, older workers often experience age discrimination. Some feel discriminated against based on their age, and are forced into retirement in order to open up more spots for the younger generations. When this occurs, it could be a violation of civil rights and could result in a civil lawsuit against the employer.

A recent age discrimination lawsuit filed by 3M workers is seeking to renew a request for class certification. The Minnesota lawsuit is based on the company's human resources policies that affect the pay, promotions and termination of the older employees at the company. Last year the case was certified as a class action, but recently the Minnesota appeals court reversed that decision. It is now being sent back to state court in order to present more evidence for class certification.

The plaintiffs in the case allege that the corporate policies and practices are age-biased and violate the Age Discrimination in Employment Act. They cite instances alleging the selection of younger employees for training for higher positions and put on the fast track for promotions. Furthermore, they contend that older employees are being discriminated against in performance appraisals, promotions, training opportunities, salary and terminations.

When an employee feels as though they are being discriminated against based on their age or believe that they endured a wrongful termination due to age discrimination, they have options. A civil lawsuit could be filed against the employer and this could result in compensation for the employee.

Source: AARP, "Age Discrimination Lawsuit Expands," Tom Osborne, Dan Kohman, and Laurie McCann, Dec. 2, 2013

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