Feds serve ASG, Human Resources with civil action


The federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) civil action suit against the American Samoa Government and the local Department of Human Resources was finally served last week on the defendants.

The suit, filed Aug. 30 at the federal court in Honolulu, charged that the defendants discriminated against a class of older workers because of their age. According to EEOC, the territorial government initiated a campaign in the territory to remove older employees from the government workforce in order to open up positions for younger people who are seeking employment.

EEOC alleges specifically that the Human Resources Department director executed plans in 2009 to remove older staff by involuntarily reassigning employees over the age of 50 into undesirable positions.

The EEOC asserts that the "reassignments were designed to pressure older workers to retire or resign."

Federal electronic court records state that the complaint was served on the defendants on Nov. 2. Court records show that copies of the complaint were served on DHR and the Attorney General's Office. A local law-firm served the complaint on behalf of EEOC.

The federal court has set Dec. 14 for a hearing on the matter. There has been no official comment issued from ASG on the suit. DHR had told Samoa News, when the suit was filed, that they could not comment until they see a copy of the complaint.


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