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U.S. employers sued over targeting younger employees on Facebook

A new lawsuit is looking at social media job ads and whether or not targeting prospective employees based on their age constitutes discrimination.

The lawsuit, filed in San Francisco by a communications industry labor union, targets several U.S. employers including T-Mobile US Inc, Amazon Inc and Cox Communications Inc. It claims the companies imposed age limits on who could see recruitment ads, targeting jobs only to those younger than 38.

The complaint argues that this practice denies job opportunities to individuals seeking jobs and suppresses the number of older workers who apply and are hired.

Facebook is not named as a defendant in the suit but is accused of engaging in the practice. However, the lawyers in this case are seeking class-action status and plan to add defendants.

Age discrimination a looming problem

If the allegations are found to be true, these Facebook ads would be in violation of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), which forbids discrimination based on age against anyone who is over 40. This includes hiring, firing, pay, job assignments, promotions, layoff, training, benefits and more. Older workers are also protected from harassment because of their age.

Even so, age discrimination is still perceived as a big problem in the U.S. As of 2013, one in five workers were 55 or older, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Among workers, 64 percent said they had seen or experienced age discrimination in the workplace.

If you believe you have been a victim of age discrimination or denied job opportunities, you deserve to fight for your rights. An experienced employment law attorney can advocate for a workplace and job market free from discrimination for you, as should be guaranteed to you by law.

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