KANSAS CITY, KS – Karen Fuller, a former KCTV – 5 news anchor, is suing the KCTV-5’s owner for age and gender discrimination. Fuller filed her suit in Kansas City, Kansas against the Meredith Corporation, the owner of KCTV-5 which is based out of Fairway, Kansas. Fuller alleges the station had an unofficial “age ceiling” for its female anchors. After years of service, Fuller was beloved throughout the community and news of her age and gender discrimination sent shock waves through the community.
Fuller was terminated in January 2015, just four months before her contract was up for renewal. Fuller was hired as a co-anchor for the KCTV-5’s prime time newscast in 2003. Fuller was beloved throughout the Kansas City metro area for her inviting smile and warm personality. She had never received any verbal or written warnings about her job performance, and never felt that her job was jeopardy. At age 47, Fuller was terminated without warning or legal justification. According to her suit, in the eyes of Meredith Corporation women news anchors like Ms. Fuller had become too old to deliver the news. Fuller alleges that Meredith didn’t hold her male counterparts to the same standard. Despite Fuller’s stellar performance, when she complained of the stations discriminatory treatment, she was terminated in retaliation.
Her last day at the station was February 25, 2015. She was told by the station that she would be given a spot at the 10 p.m. newscast to say good bye to her viewers. However, that night, after the 6 p.m. newscast management told Fuller to leave the building immediately. Fuller believes Meredith’s strong-arm tactics were an attack on her years of hard work, professionalism and loyalty to her job. She seeks an unspecified amount of damages.
Age discrimination is a pervasive problem in the workplace. Many employers encourage older employees to retire so they can get younger, fresher workers in the workplace. This problem is especially troubling for older female employees who not only face age discrimination but also gender discrimination. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits employers from discriminating against individuals on the basis of their age.
Under Title VII, a person falls into a protected age class once they reach the age of forty (40) and are afforded Title VII protections. If an individual can show they are terminated, forced to retire or moved to a lesser position (among other things) because of their age, then that individual created a prima facie case for age discrimination. Once the individual creates a prima facie case, it falls on the employer to provide a legitimate non-discriminatory reason for their employment decision. If they are unable to provide a legitimate non-discriminatory reason for their employment decision then they may be found to have violated Title VII.
The skilled New York City sexual harassment attorneys and our Philadelphia sexual harassment attorneys at the Derek Smith Law Group, PLLC, have years of experience litigating both age and gender discrimination claims. We work closely with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, along with state human rights agencies, to ensure the rights of our clients are protected. If you feel you have been discriminated against based on your age or gender, please give our talented employment discrimination and sexual harassment attorneys a call at (800) 807-2209.
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