Former PGW Employees to Seek Class Certification
in Age Discrimination Suit
July 19, 2011
Seven former Pittsburgh Glass Works (PGW) employees who filed a
suit against the company last September alleging age discrimination
intend to seek conditional class certification this fall, according
to court documents filed Friday.
According to a case management order filed by the U.S. District
Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania where the case is
pending, the plaintiffs "have advised the court that they intend
to move for conditional certification and court-facilitated notice
once they have had the opportunity to take some preliminary discover,
including the review of documents and information within the possession,
custody and control of defendant and/or its predecessor, PPG Industries
The motion for conditional certification is due on October 3, and
hearings on the motion-and any objections to it-are scheduled to
begin on December 13. Plaintiffs in the case include Rudolph Karlo,
Mark McLure, William Cunningham, Jeffrey Mariette, David Meixelsberger,
Benjamin Thompson and Richard Csukas, who allege they were let go
in March 2009 because of their ages, which ranged at the time between
52 and 58.
PGW attributed the March 2009 layoffs to "an unprecedented
downturn in the world economy
" in its response to the
suit. The company also has
filed a counterclaim, alleging that the suit is a breach of
the employees' contractual obligations with the company,and claims
they are liable for "compensatory damages equal to the consideration
PGW paid them in exchange for enforceable promises and releases,"
based on severance payments and agreements signed at the time of
the employees' release.
However, the original plaintiffs have denied the allegations in
the counterclaim, and say the separation agreements and releases
did not "contain valid or enforceable waivers or releases of
plaintiffs' claims of age discrimination."
This is one of two pending age discrimination cases currently pending
against PGW. The other
was filed in the same court by former employee James Freeman
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