A leading provider in the solid waste industry will pay nearly $3 million to settle an age discrimination lawsuit filed by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).

According to the EEOC, the company terminated and denied job transfer opportunities to more than 20 employees over the age of 40. The list of terminated employees includes garbage collectors, drivers, and supervisors, some of whom were employed by the company for more than 25 years. The EEOC claimed that those jobs were then offered to younger employees who were subsequently held to lower performance standards.

The EEOC further charged that the company engaged in a form of hazing called "break him off," in which some employees were worked to the point of exhaustion, often making it difficult for them to do their jobs.

In addition to the monetary relief, the company has agreed to designate a corporate equal employment opportunity compliance officer, conduct an audit of its employment policies and procedures, and provide annual anti-discrimination training to employees. The company will also be required to submit annual reports regarding its employment practices to the EEOC.