Hawaii Healthcare Professionals, Inc., also known as Hawaii Professional HomeCare Services, Inc., and its owner, Carolyn Frutoz-De Harne, were ordered in July in a default judgment to pay $193,000 to former employee Debra Moreno who was allegedly fired because of her age.
The EEOC, who filed the age discrimination lawsuit, claims that Carolyn Frutoz-De Harne ordered the termination of Debra Moreno even though Moreno’s direct supervisor told Frutoz-De Harne that Moreno was a thorough and efficient worker.
Frutoz-De Harne allegedly told the supervisor that Moreno “looks old,” “sounds old on the telephone,” and is “like a bag of bones.” Frutoz-De Harne also allegedly told the manager that Moreno was not the type of person she wanted representing her company. After Moreno was fired, her boss told her about Frutoz-De Harne’s ageist comments, and Moreno then filed an age discrimination complaint with the EEOC.
Anna Y. Park, an EEOC regional attorney, said, “Age should never be a factor when evaluating an employee or job applicant’s worth. What makes this case especially appalling is the flagrant disregard for a worker’s abilities, coupled with disparaging ageist remarks and thinking. The EEOC will not tolerate such violations of civil rights law and is pleased by the court’s decision.”