By Jennifer Brice

CENTRAL CITY, Colo. (CBS4)– A Central City casino will pay out a $250,000 settlement in an age discrimination lawsuit nearly six years after employees said they were let go because they weren’t “young or pretty enough.”

Natalie Gilbert and Eva Pridmore worked as slot attendants. They say they were fired for not being young or pretty enough. The Reserve Casino hotel in Central City had just been sold, was undergoing management changes, and the women say they immediately started to notice changes.

Reserve Casino in Central City (credit: CBS)

Reserve Casino in Central City (credit: CBS)

“They put me on the bottom part of the totem pole,” says Gilbert. “I was not a favorite. I was not younger.”

Pridmore says being fired depressed her, “At that time, nobody would hire women at our age.”

Four employees filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, which filed a discrimination lawsuit.

CBS4's Jennifer Brice interviews Natalie Gilbert and Eva Pridmore (credit: CBS)

CBS4’s Jennifer Brice interviews Natalie Gilbert and Eva Pridmore (credit: CBS)

During the EEOC’s investigation, they found that managers for the casino took pictures of employees and later used those photos to screen out the older, less attractive employees. Gilbert says it was devastating.

“It made me feel useless,” she says. “I spend over 16 years in that location with three companies and to be axed because they wanted to younger ones.”

Reserve Casino in Central City  (credit: CBS)

Reserve Casino in Central City (credit: CBS)

Almost six years later, the casino settled for $250,000 to be paid to the four women. RCH Colorado, the casino owner and operator, also now has to conduct anti-discrimination training for all of its employees.

Reserve Casino in Central City (credit: CBS)

Reserve Casino in Central City (credit: CBS)

The Reserve Casino’s current general manager says the management team involved in the lawsuit are all now gone, some six years later. They say they have a diverse group of employees with 250 people working full-time.

Jennifer Brice is a reporter with CBS4 focusing on crime and courts. Follow her on Facebook or on Twitter @CBS4Jenn.

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