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Government Outlines Economic Benefits

The Department for Work and Pensions has revealed new research to demonstrate how employers can benefit from older workers and play a more active role in age discrimination.

Focusing on the challenges faced by nine sectors of the economy, including education, construction and health and social care, the Age Partnership Group (APG) sector specific research reports will be used in tandem with the introduction of the Age Discrimination Legislation on 1st October 2006. The reports hinge on the recruitment, training and retention of older workers and will also be used for the Age Positive Campaign.

James Purnell, Minister for Pension Reform, noted: “As announced in the Pensions White Paper, we are working with employers to remove compulsory retirement ages and adopt flexible approaches. We recognise that we have an ageing population, with many older people who want the choice to continue working rather than retire”.

The research conclusions make for uncomfortable reading, citing that eight of the sectors use length of experience to fix starting salaries; seven use age or length of service when making redundancy decisions; four sectors set maximum or contractual retirement ages, often fixed below 65.

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The report also highlights how the age legislation affects young people in the workplace.

View the full 240 page report here

Vijay Pattni

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