Headlines: August 21st, 1998

Organisations who treat employees over 50 unfairly have been warned they cannot afford to continue the practice. New figures show that in eight years time 25 per cent of the workforce will be in this category.

The Government plans to publish a non-statutory Code of Practice in the Autumn, but says it cannot tackle the problem alone.

Action on Age – A report of the Consultation on Age Discrimination has been
published following a consultation process begun in October 1997 which included meetings with the CBI, TUC, Age Concern and the Institute of Personnel Development.

Speaking about the report’s publication Employment Minister Andrew Smith said: “In the last year I have met with a wide range of people and organisations who all wish to see an end to age discrimination in employment. It is clear that it is a complex issue that impacts on many areas of Government Policy. It is a challenging task, the key to which is changing attitudes towards age and how we judge the ability of all to participate and contribute to the continued growth and development of the economy.”

The report main findings show Age Discrimination affects every employment area, is a factor in selecting for redundancy, but most frequently manifests itself in the job application phase than promotion or retention.

As well as the new code, the Government will be removing all upper age limits
from job vacancies in JobCentres.