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Univ. of Wisconsin Charged With Age Discrimination by EEOC

A recently filed federal lawsuit by the EEOC against the University of Wisconsin has been making headlines due to the seemingly blatant age discrimination that is alleged.

The case involves a laid-off marketing and communications specialist, Bambi Butzlaff Voss, who was denied re-employment into other rather similar (and open) positions within the university. The EEOC took up her case, and it was discovered that one of the open positions went to someone thirty-years younger, and (naturally) with much less experience.

Details of the Case

Voss, who is 53 years old, was employed on the university's Waukesha campus. After she was laid off, she applied for several positions at the university's Madison campus, many of which required the same duties and responsibilities as she had at her position in Waukesha. Unfortunately though, she was not hired, despite having 25-years of experience.

The EEOC alleges that the university refused to hire her because of her age, and the agency holds out the younger employee that was hired for the position as prima facie evidence of the age bias.

Notably, the action seeks injunctive relief ordering the university to re-employ Ms. Voss, and preventing further age discrimination. The case also seeks backpay and additional damages.

The university has a policy of not commenting on pending litigation, though it may want to consider taking a look at its hiring policies.

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