Nashville Fire veteran sues for age discrimination - KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather & Sports

Nashville Fire veteran sues for age discrimination


A 39-year veteran of the Nashville Fire Department is suing the Metro government for age discrimination and harassment.

Deputy Chief Danny Yates said his boss tried to force him into an early retirement, then retaliated when he refused.

"I'm a good employee that has a lot to contribute to this department," Yates said.

In a lawsuit filed Thursday, Yates claimed that beginning in 2012, former Fire Chief Billy Lynch made numerous attempts to get Yates to retire.

Yates was 62, younger than Lynch. Yates claimed Lynch made comments like, "We need young blood around here."

"Don't you think you ought to retire by now? Don't you think all public safety people should be out of here at a certain age? It was just constant, over and over again," Yates said.

Yates declined an early retirement buyout offer.

"Immediately after that, I was called in his office and he told me that we were reorganizing and he told me to move out of my office by March 15 and move downstairs," Yates said.

Yates was moved out of the department's administrative offices.

The suit said Yates was then excluded from decision-making, despite being the highest-ranking official with the most seniority in the department.

Attorney Rocky McElhaney has filed a $1 million lawsuit for age discrimination.

"He's been an exemplary employee," McElhaney said. "He should be accommodated, not discriminated."

Lynch officially retired from Metro government a year ago, though he remains on the Metro payroll for a part-time job in the mayor's office.

"I'm not sure how this is going to end," Yates said. "I just want to live in peace. And right now, it's not very peaceful."

Channel 4 News was not able to reach Lynch by deadline Friday.

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