Ageism at work is holding back over 50s

Older worker

Age Scotland has said companies need to do more to get the best out of their workers, after a report showed employees aged 50 and over face ageism

17th July 2018 by Gareth Jones 0 Comments

Older Scots are facing prejudice in the workplace and are not being allowed to flourish, a charity has said.

Age Scotland has called for businesses to do more to ensure they are not missing out on the talents of employees who are aged over 50.

The call follows a report by the Women and Equalities committee at Westminster which said that employers are not doing enough to prevent ageism at work.

Delia Henry, Age Scotland charity director, said it is unacceptable that organisations are not putting strategies in place to support older workers.

"This report is eye opening but sadly its conclusions are unsurprising,” she said. “The overwhelming majority of businesses and employers in Scotland do not have an age strategy and as such will struggle to get the best out of the workforce.

"Older workers add tremendous value to the workplace but are too often faced with unfair bias and less opportunity as they get older. This must change."

Henry added that the charity is working with employers to help them become more age inclusive, but that more action is needed from the government and businesses as the population is ageing.

The report found the government and the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) are failing to enforce the law on age discrimination and must be clearer that prejudice, unconscious bias and casual ageism in the workplace are all unlawful.

Chair of the committee Maria Miller said: "Age discrimination in the workplace is a serious problem, as many older people have discovered. Yet despite it being unlawful for more than a decade, the scale and lack of enforcement uncovered by our inquiry is both alarming and totally unacceptable.

"The government and the EHRC have failed to get to grips with this."