SA eatery removes offensive job ad

25 November, 2014

An Italian restaurant in South Australia has removed a controversial job ad after it was chided for being a breach of age discrimination laws.

The Vasarelli Cellar Door Restaurant at McLaren Vale recently put out an advertisement for a new chef, stipulating applicants should be "max 30 years old".

The ad posted on Gumtree also read: "The candidate must have the following characteristic: max 30 years old, motivated, responsable (sic), skilled, good english, on time, clean, fast, able to organise the job and able to work in all sections of the kitchen, respectful of the workplace and the colleagues."

South Australia's Commissioner for Equal Opportunity Anne Gale said the Equal Opportunity Act 1984 made it unlawful to discriminate potential job applicants based on age.

"There are some exceptions to this, for example when it is a genuine occupational requirement or where the position is to benefit people who are disadvantaged because of their age," she said.

"However, given the number of celebrity chefs we see from a range of age groups, it is difficult to see how these exemptions would apply. 

"Having a requirement of 'good English' could also be a form of race discrimination."

A humble apology

Head chef at Vasarelli's Sebastiano Romero, who was responsible for writing the notice, expressed his embarrassment, saying he was "sorry for the mess".

"I've seen (on Gumtree) Chinese restaurants asking only for Chinese people and I just wanted someone with energy," Romero said.

"I'm not racist or anything – my English is not so good."