A former Glasgow retail store manager is suing the company for which he worked, citing age discrimination, violation of the Kentucky Civil Rights Statute, wrongful discharge and intentional infliction of emotional distress.
Beau B. Black worked for Speciality Retailers Inc. as manager of a Glasgow store location for 38 years before he was terminated in July 2016.
Black was first hired at Watson's, which was bought by Peebles in 1998 and later purchased by Stage Stores. In August 2011, Stage Stores changed the name of the Peebles store in which Black worked to Goody's. In 2015, Goody's became Stage Stores.
Black was grandfathered in with no new paperwork or interviewing process after each new company took over, the lawsuit said.
In June 2015, Black was diagnosed with stress/anxiety disorder and given a doctor's note to take two weeks off for medical leave. Due to his medical leave, Black was not present at the store for June inventory, the lawsuit said.
A manager from Hopkinsville supervised the store and took the inventory.
The Hopkinsville store manager “had no experience in high sales volume/heavy inventory store during a yearly inventory, which resulted in a higher loss percentage than in the previous year,” the lawsuit said.
Black returned to work at the end of his two-week medical leave. In February 2016, he was given a performance write-up and was given high goals, but without exact numbers or percentages. Black was told that upper management would work with him to make improvements, the lawsuit said.
Two months later, Black was given his yearly evaluation and received the first bad review in 38 years. Upper management said they would work with Black but that he needed to increase sales, credit cards and yearly shrinkage. In June 2016, the yearly inventory shrink was lowered by 1 percent point, the lawsuit said.
In July 2016, Black was told “'we are going to have to let you go,'” the lawsuit said.
Black was not offered a severance package at the time of his dismissal. To the best of his knowledge, his replacement at the store was under the age of 40 and earned an annual salary between $36,000 to $38,000 per year, the lawsuit said.
Black originally filed the lawsuit in Barren Circuit Court, but the case has been moved to federal court due to “complete diversity jurisdiction of the parties,” the lawsuit said.
A scheduling conference was held in federal court on Oct. 31, during which several dates were set through August 2019 for the submission of various documents pertaining to the case, however, no trial date was listed in the court document.