Fired 'soccer mom' seniors offered jobs
Lone Thompson, stands surrounded by other former employees outside the Metro store in CherryHill Mall in London, Ont., August 22, 2012. (MIKE HENSEN/QMI AGENCY)
Seven women who went public with a human rights complaint against their former employer after they say they were fired for not looking like soccer moms have been offered new jobs.
Toronto-based Luma Events says it values older employees and just happens to be is expanding its London operation, which serves product samples in LCBO stores, and president Ian Sparks says he wants to hire the women.
“I have contacted him to thank him for his kindness,” Lone Thompson, 65, one of the women, said Wednesday.
“It was so sweet — it was a human being reaching out to another. It was very considerate,” she said.
Sparks has two shifts this weekend he’s looking to fill, wanting to move quickly on the hires.
“I would love to have them on our team in London,” he said. “We have had a good experience with more mature workers. They are loyal and interact well with customers.”
The seven women have filed an application with the Ontario human rights tribunal after they lost their jobs with Toronto-based InStore Focus, offering customers product samples in stores, especially food retailers.
They say they were told they didn’t fit the “soccer mom” look the company wanted to promote.
The Human Rights Legal Support Centre filed a complaint this week on behalf of five women. Two others had already filed.
“We are delighted with the offer,” Jennifer Ramsay of the support centre said. “They have lots of experience and want to work.”
InStore does about 100,000 product demonstrations a year, everything from food to health care products.
The women were at InStore from 10 to 15 years, and worked an average 14 to 28 hours a week. The grocery chain Metro is also named in the human rights action.
InStore and Metro have declined comment on the matter.