Failed applicant allowed to view CVs of others

EMMA BAILEY
Last updated 05:00 03/03/2014

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A Timaru man accusing Alpine Energy of age discrimination for not hiring him has won the right to see the CVs of the other applicants.

In 2012, when he was 62 years old, Kevin Waters applied for two positions advertised by Alpine Energy. He was unsuccessful in both and Mr Waters alleges that he was discriminated against by reason of age.

After a hearing on February 10, the Human Rights Review Tribunal has ruled Mr Waters has the right to view the information held about the other applicants.

The decision stated Mr Waters should have full access to all documents as they might assist in, "establishing, albeit indirectly, that the record shows that persons of younger age, with lesser skills, lesser qualifications, lesser direct experience and lesser time engaged in similar work or in similar positions, were considered more favourably and were ultimately successful in being appointed to the two advertised positions."

Mr Waters was an employee of Alpine Energy from 1975 to 2008 when he resigned. On January 9, 2012, Mr Waters applied for the advertised position of engineering officer at Alpine Energy. Later that month he applied for the position of maintenance engineer.

He went to an interview for the second position and at the same time was advised that he would not be interviewed for the first position because, "initial screening indicated that applications had been made by candidates better suited", the decision stated.

"Alpine Energy did not, however, receive the level of interest it had hoped for in respect of the second position, attracting candidates with fewer qualifications than expected. It then engaged a recruitment agency, Farrow Jamieson, to assist in finding the ideal candidate."

Mr Waters then applied for the role through Farrow Jamieson, but they did not include him in their client recommendations. "Alpine Energy denies the allegations made by Mr Waters that age or employment status were relevant to its consideration of the application by Mr Waters."

Alpine Energy maintained the employment applications should not be released because they were submitted in the expectation of confidence and also several had been destroyed.

Mr Waters has said he does not need personal names or addresses and agreed to sign a confidentiality agreement.

"He does, however, seek an order that for both successful applicants he be provided with their CV, experience and previous employment history and related details so that a comparison can be made with Mr Waters' own CV, employment history and the like."

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The tribunal dismissed Alpine Energy confidentiality direction and ruled that all relevant documents should be available to Mr Waters.

After all statements and documents have been filed a hearing will be set down for four days.

- The Timaru Herald

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