3 ex-Carlow University employees sue claiming age discrimination

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Claiming they were part of a purge of older women, three former Carlow University employees filed a lawsuit in U.S. District court today, alleging age discrimination.

Josephine Hatalla, 65 at the time of her termination, of Squirrel Hill, was the university's interim director of academic advising, according to the complaint.

Joan House, who was 61, of Penn Hills, was its interim director of disability services.

Kathleen Wunschel, who was 73, of Plum, was the mailroom supervisor, the complaint indicated.

In September, they were among six women over the age of 60 whose positions were eliminated, according to the complaint.

In all, 11 positions were eliminated, the plaintiffs' attorney, Sam Cordes, said.

"The effect of this elimination [of positions] was predominantly on people who were older ... in the protected age class, which is over than 40," said Mr. Cordes.

Only two were under age 40, and the average age was 53, he said.

The duties of the positions were given to younger workers, the plaintiffs claim.

The plaintiffs are seeking lost wages and benefits, plus damages for distress.

"They want to go back to work," Mr. Cordes said.

A Carlow University spokesman said the university has not yet seen the lawsuit.

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Rich Lord: rlord@post-gazette.com, 412-263-1542 and on Twitter: @richelord.


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