19525358_sAlthough telling an 80 year old employee that “you need to spend more time with your retired husband” is not in and of itself evidence of age discrimination, nonetheless it could very well be if the employee was, in fact, repeatedly “prodded” to leave voluntarily.

According to the Patriot-News of Central PA, this is the basis of a new federal lawsuit by a woman who worked for more than 35 years as a secretary at a Catholic school in Pennsylvania.  She claims that she was fired after being told for months that she should retire and that “she needed to spend more time with her retired husband.”

She claims that this “repeated prodding to leave voluntarily” amounted to age discrimination.

She also claims retaliation in that after she complained about this to the diocese secretary for education she was forced to take on new tasks that “required more extensive job responsibilities than any other similarly situated school secretary within the diocese.”

Employers:  stay away from words relating to or suggesting age, aging, retirement.