'UPI Accused of Age Discrimination'



Here's a story from the April 16, 1988, edition of Editor & Publisher:

Albert Kaff, a 67-year-old former vice president of United Press International, has accused the news service of age discrimination for his demotion and forced retirement.

Kaff, who spent 29 years with UPI and works with Cornell University's news service, filed suit in March in U.S. District Court in New York.

The suit claims Kaff was told by former UPI president William Small in 1983 that UPI's executive committed wanted a "younger, more vigorous person" as vice president and general manager of the Asia-Pacific Division, which Kaff had headed since 1978,

Kaff was replaced by Michael Keats, then 48, and demoted to administrator of UPI's New York office.

In 1985, according to the suit, Kaff was handed early-retirement forms by then-UPI international vice president Malcolm Hughes, who said he could retire, resign or be fired. Kaff said to avoid being fired, he signed the forms, which stated the request was made "free of duress."

The suit claims he lost $48,000 in wages, while unemployed 11 months beginning in 1985, and that his wife "was forced to work 77 hours a week, seven days a week" to support their family, "causing her physical and mental suffering and injuring her health."

UPI's labor attorney, Barry Bevacqua of Philadelphia, could not be reached for comment.

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