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Employment Law: Age Discrimination. Essay

1755 words - 7 pages

Age DiscriminationCertainly, one could wonder, what in the world is the connection between age discrimination and security? The answer is simple, workplace security is not only protecting resources; security managers also must protect a company's most valuable resource, its people and employees against discrimination. Age discrimination continues to damage the very fabric of our society, reducing both the incomes and the self-confidence of millions of Americans. In a recent Louis Harris survey, conducted in 1989, it reported that one million workers aged 50 to 64 believed that they would be forced to retire before they were ready. Most of this group, anticipating an unwanted early retirement, said they would prefer to work for years longer. Another Harris survey, conducted 5 years after the first one, found that 4.5 million older Americans--one in sever of those 55 and older who were not working at that time--were willing to work but could not find a suitable job. These discouraging statistics were cited in the Untapped Resource, a 1993 report on "The Americans Over 55 at Work Program," a 5-year research effort conducted by the Commonwealth Fund to examine the productive potential of older Americans. This research paper will cover some of the critical elements in the ongoing saga of age discrimination. It will attempt to explain some of the issues older Americans are dealing with: (1) Subtle Age Bias (2) Age Discrimination In employment Act (3) Job Hunting at age 55 (4) Cost-Cutting Measures Puts Older workers at greater Risk (4) The court system. Let us first discuss what the subtle age bias entails.Age discrimination can be covert in most instances, such as, a bank hiring an extremely pretty teller, and an inexperienced young woman instead of an older woman with a strong background in banking. Nevertheless, it is the subtler forms of age discrimination that may have the most damaging and pervasive effect on cutting short the productive years of Americans. A law partner who is moved to a smaller office when he passes 60 years of age, the 50-year-old professional who knows hard work won't bring him any more promotions, the vacancy is filled by a younger staff member before older workers even know about it, and the new boss who makes life so bad for the 60-year-old secretary, he inherits, that she quits. Age discrimination is sometimes allowed to continue with surprisingly little protest because of the long-held assumptions that it is right and proper for older workers to move aside to make room for younger workers who need to support families, that older workers are less competent, and that there's no mileage in training them for new jobs. In fact, for a variety of reasons, older workers have been leaving the labor force. The percentage of men 55-64 in the work place declined from 87% in 1950 to 67% in 1996, and for men 65 and older, from 46% to 16%. The percentage of women 55 and older in the work force hasn't changed substantially because of...

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