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Former General Mills workers accuse the company of discrimination

Due to the recession, many companies made difficult decisions that led to them laying off many of their workers in attempts to cut costs. The affected workers were then faced with the hardship of trying to find new employment, which likely dramatically impacted their finances. In most instances, Texas workers were relieved legally. However, in one situation in which a number of employees in the same age range was ousted at the same time, some believe that the company involved is guilty of age discrimination.

In 2012, General Mills created an initiative called Project Refuel. This forced approximately 850 employees to lose their jobs. According to a complaint by 14 of the company's former employees, age was a factor when the company's management determined who to lay off.

According to their complaint, workers who were age 40 or older were relieved before their younger counterparts. Based upon data about Project Refuel, it was garnered that employees' ages were heavily weighted factors in how likely it was that workers would be laid off. It is further alleged that the vacated positions were then filled with younger employees.

According to a comment made by officials at General Mills, the plaintiffs were all part of the restructuring process and believe that their claims are unfounded. The 14 plaintiffs filed an age discrimination claim on behalf of themselves, as well as others who believe that they were relieved for the same reason. It is illegal for a company to terminate employees based upon any protected status characteristics. Texas workers who believe that they have been victimized can choose to pursue legal recourse.

Source: kstp.com, "14 People Sue General Mills for Age Discrimination after 2012 Layoffs", Jennie Olson Digital, Feb. 12, 2015

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