News, Culture & Society

CBS affiliate must pay $215k to reporter, 47, for discrimination

Texas CBS affiliate must pay $215K to veteran traffic reporter, 47, after she was passed over for a job in favor of a former Arizona Cardinals cheerleader who was in her 20s and ‘did not meet the hiring criteria’

  • CBS was charged with violating federal law by refusing to hire Tammy Dombeck Campbell for a full-time reporter position based on her age 
  • Campbell, now 47, had been working as a freelance, non-staff traffic reporter at KTXA based in Dallas/Forth Worth 
  • Following the departure of Whitney Drolen in October 2014, CBS began looking for a replacement and would eventually hire Chelsey Davis 
  • The former Arizona Cardinals cheerleader had worked briefly at KPHO-TV in Phoenix, where she had only just been hired in July of 2013 

CBS was charged with violating federal law by refusing to hire Tammy Dombeck Campbell for a full-time reporter position based on her age

The CBS Stations Group of Texas has paid $215,000 to a former traffic reporter in her 40s after the veteran journalist was passed over for a job that was given to a a former Arizona Cardinals cheerleader who was much younger and not as experienced.

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced in a Monday release that CBS was charged with violating federal law by refusing to hire Tammy Dombeck Campbell for a full-time reporter position based on her age. 

Campbell, now 47,  had been working as a freelance, non-staff traffic reporter at KTXA (known locally as CBS 11) based in Dallas/Forth Worth for two years prior to her departure.

Following the departure of Whitney Drolen in October 2014, CBS began searching for a replacement. At that point, Campbell had already been working at the station for well over a year.

According to the EEOC, the CBS job posting called for an ‘ideal candidate’ who would have strong knowledge of local traffic in the area. The announcement also said that the ‘applicant must have at least five years professional broadcasting experience.’ 

CBS has to pay er $215K

Campbell was

Campbell, now 47, had been working as a freelance, non-staff traffic reporter at KTXA (known locally as CBS 11) based in Dallas/Forth Worth for two years prior to her departure

The EEOC said in the release that CBS 11 decided to hire a 24-year-old applicant who had been an NFL cheerleader and did not meet the hiring criteria that had been advertised by CBS. 

CBS 11 is also said to have offered the position to a 27-year-old applicant who accepted the role and then withdrew from the hiring process. 

In May 2015, the Star Telegram reported that former Arizona Cardinals cheerleader Chelsey Davis was tapped to take over the position. Prior to the job at CBS 11, Davis had worked as a multimedia journalist and traffic reporter at KPHO-TV in Phoenix, where she had only just been hired in July of 2013. 

Whitney Drolen

Chelsey Davis

Following the departure of Whitney Drolen (left) in October 2014, CBS began looking for a replacement and would eventually hire Chelsey Davis (right)

The former Arizona Cardinals cheerleader had worked as a multimedia journalist and traffic reporter at KPHO-TV in Phoenix, where she had only just been hired in July of 2013

The former Arizona Cardinals cheerleader had worked as a multimedia journalist and traffic reporter at KPHO-TV in Phoenix, where she had only just been hired in July of 2013

‘Tammy Campbell was clearly qualified for the position of traffic reporter,’ said Joel Clark, EEOC senior trial attorney for the Dallas District Office. 

‘The EEOC argued to the court that CBS 11 preferred a younger, less qualified applicant, and that the employer defaulted to unfounded stereotypes about female reporters.’ 

'Tammy Campbell was clearly qualified for the position of traffic reporter,' said Joel Clark, EEOC senior trial attorney for the Dallas District Office

‘Tammy Campbell was clearly qualified for the position of traffic reporter,’ said Joel Clark, EEOC senior trial attorney for the Dallas District Office

The alleged conduct violates the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, which prohibits discrimination against people who are 40 or over.

The EEOC first tried to reach a voluntary pre-litigation settlement with CBS through its conciliation process, but filed suit after being unable to reach an agreement. 

U.S. District Judge Barbara M. G. Lynn resolved the suit, which said CBS will pay the settlement and commit to not engage in age discrimination. 

CBS has also agreed to provide training on the ADEA, publish a notice of employee rights and will report to the EEOC how it is complying with the various consent decree requirements.     

‘In explaining its decision, the company relied on what was called the ‘it’ factor. The EEOC was prepared to prove that, for Ms. Campbell, ‘it’ was her age,’ added EEOC Regional Attorney Robert A. Canino. 

‘We hope that the resolution of this case will be another step forward in moving past ageist attitudes that can limit opportunities in the field of broadcast television.’

CBS has also agreed to provide training on the ADEA, publish a notice of employee rights and will report to the EEOC how it is complying with the various consent decree requirements

CBS has also agreed to provide training on the ADEA, publish a notice of employee rights and will report to the EEOC how it is complying with the various consent decree requirements 



Read more at DailyMail.co.uk