Age discrimination occurs when one particular age group is treated differently to another age group on the grounds of chronological age. A less favorable treatment can occur, for example when a person is refused medical treatment because they are deemed too old. Also, it can manifest through the assumption that older people have a decline in their intellect due to their age, and a decline in their cognitive and physical performance. Individuals regardless of age should not be treated different than younger employees on any basis if they are equally qualified and capable of performing the same duties. The view of older people as burdens or dependents, has left an uneven playing field for those older people trying to compete in the job-market with the stereotypes and stigma of being old.
The Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA) was created to address arbitrary discrimination in the workplace because of age. An employer cannot fail or refuse to hire or fire an individual or discriminate against with respects to compensation, terms, conditions, or privileges of employment, because of age. Due to the concern of older workers being deprived of employment on the basis of stereotypes, congress passed The Age Discriminating in Employment Act of 1967. The law protects employees who are 40 years or older, from age discrimination.
The Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 finds that in the face of rising productivity and affluence; older workers find themselves disadvantaged in their efforts to retain employment, and especially to regain employment when displaced from jobs; the setting of arbitrary age limits regardless of potential for job performance has become a common practice, and certain otherwise desirable practices may work to the disadvantage of older persons; the incidence of unemployment, especially long-term unemployment with resultant deterioration of skill, morale, and employer acceptability is, relative to the younger ages, high among older workers; their numbers are great and growing; and their employment problems grave; the existence in industries affecting commerce, of arbitrary discrimination in employment because of age, burdens commerce and the free flow of goods in commerce.
Exceptions to Employer
It shall not be unlawful for an employer, employment agency, or labor organization-to take any action otherwise prohibited in The Age Discrimination In Employment Act of 1967, where age is a bona fide occupational qualification reasonably necessary to the normal operation of the particular business, or where the differentiation is based on reasonable factors other than age, or where such practices involve an employee in a workplace in a foreign country, and compliance with such subsections would cause such employer, or a corporation controlled by such employer, to violate the laws of the country in which such workplace is located.
Reeves v. Sanderson Plumbing...