The Delaware Discrimination in Employment Act prohibits discrimination in employment against persons 40 years of age and older (DE Code Tit. 19 Sec. 710 et seq.). The Act covers all public employers and private employers with four or more employees, including employment agencies and labor unions.
Under the Act, it is unlawful for an employer to:
• Fail or refuse to hire or to discharge an individual or otherwise discriminate with respect to compensation, terms, conditions, or privileges of employment because of the individual's age.
• Limit, segregate, or classify employees in any way that deprives, or tends to deprive, any individual of employment opportunities or otherwise adversely affects an employee's status because of age.
• Discriminate against any individual in admission to or employment in any apprenticeship or other training program.
• Retaliate or otherwise discriminate against any individual for opposing unlawful discrimination, or testifying, assisting, or participating in any manner in an investigation, proceeding, or enforcement hearing.
Note: One problem area often overlooked involves employment advertisements and application forms. In ads, employers should avoid any reference to “young,” “vigorous,” “recent college grad,” etc. On forms, employers should minimize references to dates in the past that may indirectly indicate an individual's age (e.g., military service, high school or college graduation).
The 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that the slow degradation of an employee's responsibilities, status, and authority provide sufficient support for a claim of constructive discharge (Stremple v. Nicholson, 289 Fed. Appx. 571 (3rd Cir. 2008)). The employee in this case had served ...