The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) claims that a national restaurant chain has been engaged in a pattern and practice of age discrimination in hiring hourly "front of the house" employees since at least 2007.
The EEOC's lawsuit charges Texas Roadhouse with refusing to hire employees 40 years of age and older into "front of the house" and other public, visible positions, such as servers, hosts, and bartenders. The restaurant chain allegedly instructed its managers to hire younger job applicants and also included only images of young people in its training manuals. Hiring officials often posed questions or statements to older, unsuccessful applicants such as:
- There are younger people here who can grow old with the company.
- Do you think you would fit in here?
- How do you feel about working with younger people?
The agency is seeking monetary relief for all applicants denied employment because of their age, the adoption of strong policies and procedures to remedy and prevent age discrimination by Texas Roadhouse, and discrimination training for its managers and employees.
The EEOC says the number of complaints filed with the agency has risen dramatically over the years.