AARP survey says workplace age discrimination is common

According to a survey conducted by the American Association of Retired Persons, more than 90 percent of workers at least 45 years of age said they thought age discrimination was common. People in Tennessee work into their 50s and 60s to make money and lead fulfilling lives, but they sometimes encounter discrimination at the workplace based on age. More than 61 percent of the people surveyed by the AARP said they'd personally experienced or seen age discrimination occur.

The survey asked respondents to say whether they'd experienced any of six actions: hearing negative comments from a coworker about them being older, being laid off or otherwise dismissed due to age, being denied development opportunities or training because they were older, not getting a job due to age, being passed up for an opportunity due to age or hearing negative comments from a supervisor about them being older. Among respondents, 30 percent said they'd experienced at least one such action. Seventeen percent said they'd experienced two or more.

Among those who had applied for a job in previous two years, 44 percent responded that they had been asked for age-related information as part of the process. Bias at work based on age is prohibited by the federal Age Discrimination in Employment Act. The law was originally designed to provide protections similar to those included in other discrimination laws.

Individuals who believe they have experienced age discrimination or workplace discrimination in another form might want to speak with a lawyer. A lawyer with experience in employment law might be able to help by examining the facts of the situation and the likelihood of a successful claim. A lawyer might gather evidence or conduct witness depositions in order to build a case for trial or negotiate with the employer to reach a solution or settlement agreeable to the client.

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