Protect Older Workers

“You’re too old – and you’re fired.”

Can you imagine hearing those words from your employer and the anxious thoughts and concerns flying through your head?

Right now, Congress has a chance to help change that.  A new bill in the Senate would protect older workers and provide them with ways to fight back against unfair age discrimination.

All workers should be judged on their skills and abilities, not their age.  But just last year, an AARP study found that nearly 2 in every 3 workers had either seen or experienced age discrimination in the workplace.  Almost 20% of those surveyed said that they weren’t hired for a job due to their age and nearly 10% said they had been laid off or fired as a result of discrimination!

Discrimination based on any part of a worker’s identity is wrong and unfair. The Protecting Older Workers Against Discrimination Act (POWADA) would help strengthen older workers’ rights under the law.

The fact is that older workers have been hit particularly hard by the recession – and many Americans 50+ now need to work longer because they can’t afford to retire. But the discrimination that older workers face in the job market often keeps people from the work they need.  It’s one of the main reasons it takes older workers almost a full year, on average, to find work.  And when a worker finally does land a new job, it’s often for less money, which can have a devastating impact on their ability to support their families or live independently.