Kmart settles age-discrimination suit in Honolulu for $120,000


POSTED: Thursday, March 25, 2010

Kmart Corp. will pay $120,000 in a settlement for alleged age discrimination of one of its pharmacists in Honolulu.

A pharmacy manager at the Honolulu store allegedly said a 70-year-old female pharmacist was “;too old,”; “;should just retire,”; and was “;greedy”; for still working, according to a bias suit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Center. The harassment occurred over four years, the complaint alleged.

In a communication book open to the pharmacy department, the manager allegedly wrote “;The pharmacy is no longer your forte,”; and “;You need to retire from pharmacy work now.”;

The pharmacist also attended church on Sundays, and the EEOC alleged that the manager purposefully scheduled her to work on those days to encourage her to quit.

Kmart allegedly threatened legal action against the pharmacist using the pretext of an unrelated matter to retaliate against her for her discrimination complaint, the EEOC said.

The pharmacist quit the company, and the EEOC filed its lawsuit in June .

“;Instead of addressing this pharmacist's legitimate complaints of age discrimination, Kmart made a bad situation worse by threatening her for complaining,”; said EEOC acting Chairman Stuart Ishimaru. “;Such retaliation only compounds an employer's culpability.”;

Kmart entered into a three-year consent decree which stipulates that the company post a notice on the matter, hire an equal employment opportunity trainer, review and revise its anti-discrimination policy, provide training to all its staff, and ensure that performance evaluations reflect discriminatory misconduct by management staff.