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Age discrimination often a barrier for older workers

As an older job seeker, you may feel as if finding gainful employment is as difficult as an adult as it was when you were fresh out of college or high school, and you would not be alone in your sentiments. Nowadays, job seekers over the age of 35 consider their age the most significant handicap currently preventing them from finding work, suggesting that age discrimination is entirely too prevalent across the United States.

According to AARP, two out of every three American employees between the ages of 45 and 74 say they have experienced age discrimination at work. While the problem affects everyone, older females, and females who work in the technology or entertainment industries, face a particularly heightened risk of falling victim to it.

Statistics surrounding age discrimination in America

While 72% of the nation’s female workers who fall between the ages of 45 and 74 say they have experienced age discrimination during their professional careers, only 57% of men within the same age range assert the same. Just what might age discrimination look like?

Unfortunately, age discrimination can take on a wide number of different forms, but essentially, any violation of the terms outlined by the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 can potentially constitute this type of discrimination. A potential employer cannot, for example, advertise that he or she is seeking a “young” workforce, nor can he or she decide not to hire you because you appear to be “too young” or “too old” for a given position. Your employer also cannot, with very few exceptions, determine that you need to retire once you reach a certain age or offer promotions or raises based on age, either.

These days, age discrimination allegations account for more than one out of every five complaints filed with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Unfortunately, your chances of experiencing it as you age and navigate the modern workforce are entirely too high.