Older employees bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to their workplaces. Unfortunately, these employees may face age discrimination and there are several common examples.
The Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) is a federal law that protects people who are 40 years of age or older from age discrimination in the workplace.
Age discrimination refers to an employee or applicant who is treated less favorably because of their age. This can include decisions related to hiring, firing, promotions, training, job assignments or other aspects of employment.
There are some common examples of age discrimination. In hiring, employers may discriminate by hiring younger employees, assuming that they have better technology skills or will stay with the company longer.
Older employees may also be passed up for promotions because employers may assume they are looking to retire. On a similar note, the employer may have a mandatory retirement policy that forces older workers to retire even if they want to continue working. Older employees may also be offered less challenging tasks or projects that do not support long-term professional growth.
Also, older employees may be offered fewer benefits because the employer may believe it will cost more to cover an older employee.
Employers may not provide flexible work arrangements to older workers who do not have the same family responsibilities as younger employees. Unfortunately, older employees may also be subject to age-related jokes or offensive comments from their supervisors or coworkers, which can cause a hostile work environment.
These are only some examples of workplace age discrimination. There is help available for employees to address these concerns.