Age discrimination, also known as ageism, is discrimination against a person or a group of people based solely on their age. Ageism can happen to anyone, as aging is one thing that we call cannot control. Unfortunately, it happens quite frequently in the workplace, whether it is towards a long-time veteran at a job or someone fresh out of college trying to get into a particular field. People are subjected to age discrimination every day, even though it has been outlawed in the country for decades.
The Age Discrimination in Employment Act was passed in 1967, which protected applicants over 40 years old from ageism. Additionally, the Age Discrimination Act of 1975 protected those of all ages from discrimination. Despite this, age discrimination has been so prominent in the workplace that most people do not even know that it is illegal.
Recent studies by the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) found discriminatory practices in the workplace for older workers during:
- Hiring process: Ageism happens when an older applicant is overlooked for someone younger based solely on age.
- At the workplace: Age discrimination happens when an older worker does not receive promotions or rewards or is harassed because of their age.
- Termination: Forcing an older worker out because of their age or letting go a worker to make space for a younger worker.
Age discrimination has such a negative impact on all businesses that it is puzzling that there are so many cases of it. Many cases of age discrimination go unreported. Older workers face many stereotypes even to this day, despite their experience and productivity. Here are some myths that the older generation of workers face:
- Employers who do not hire older workers lose out on the experience and intellectual property they have earned over the years.
- Older workers are more confident and knowledgeable than younger workers but are thought of as over-the-hill or unable to keep up.
- Older workers can help their younger counterparts learn the job instead of supervisors or bosses having to micromanage and waste productivity.
- Age discrimination causes disloyalty and lowers employee morale. Many people like to work for companies that welcome all employees of all ages, not companies that push older workers out to bring in cheaper and younger workers.
- Age discrimination causes an increase in employee turnover, which decreases any hope for success.
- There is a myth that older workers are unable to learn newer technologies, and this affects online job searches. They may be disqualified from job applications as algorithms filter out applicants based on their age.
Recent research has shown that age discrimination also causes a decline in mental health, particularly amongst women. When an older worker cannot get hired or is overlooked for a promotion, or is let go because of their age, then that has an adverse effect on the individual’s finances. Financial trouble leads to depression and similar mental health issues.
Age discrimination does not just affect older workers, as younger workers face prejudices as well. Younger workers are not hired because of the stereotypes of not having enough experience or are too immature for the job. However, many studies have shown that older workers are hired far less than their younger counterparts.
The Philadelphia Employment Lawyers at Sidkoff, Pincus & Green P.C. Help Workers Facing Age Discrimination
Age discrimination is illegal. If you are facing age discrimination in the workplace, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact the Philadelphia employment lawyers at Sidkoff, Pincus & Green P.C. immediately. Our knowledgeable team has years of experience and can help you with your case right away. Call us at 215-574-0600 or fill out our online form for an initial consultation. With offices located in Philadelphia, we proudly serve all communities of South Jersey, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey.