New age discrimination inquiry

The Human Rights Commission to investigate low employment rates for older Australians.

New age discrimination inquiry

A new national inquiry is being undertaken by the Human Rights Commission, which aims to investigate the ‘disturbingly low’ employment rates of older Australians, as well as people with disabilities.

The inquiry, launched on Wednesday by Age and Disability Discrimination Commissioner Susan Ryan and Attorney General George Brandis, hopes to identify why older Australians are not being employed, and why they are not able to retain employment once they are employed. The commission will decide whether or not this is an infringement of their human rights, and will report back to Brandis in July 2016.

“The evidence is clear and undeniable: employment rates for older Australians and people with a disability remain at disturbingly low levels and that is largely as a result of discrimination,” said Brandis. “This is not just about them. It is about all of us and how as a nation, we want to treat our fellow Australians.”

Susan Ryan believes that there is a large number of older people being turned down for jobs because of outdated stereotypes about older workers not being able to learn new skills or more likely to be on sick leave more often.

“We know that these prejudiced kinds of attitudes are prevalent in the workplace,” said Ryan.

The intergenerational report released in March exposed some of the problems that will be faced by our ageing population in the future. These issues could be exacerbated should the federal government increase the retirement age to 70, with an increasing number of older Australians being forced to remain in the workforce for longer. Yet, how can this happen if employers are reticent to give jobs to older workers?

“The right to work is a core part of the enjoyment of individual rights and liberties. Where the right to work, free from discrimination, is affected, other rights become less meaningful, less able to be achieved,” said Brandis. “The importance of gainful employment cannot be [overstated]. It provides a sense of self-worth and of being able to make a contribution to the community.”

What do you think? Do you feel that there is obvious discrimination against older Australians when it comes to finding and maintaining employment? Have you had personal experience of this type of discrimination?





    COMMENTS

    To make a comment, please register or login
    BrianP
    17th Apr 2015
    10:20am
    Taking this topic in isolation will not get us very far.

    What is needed is a serious look at the bigger picture. How is Government policy affecting the way we live and our quality of life? I think we will find if Government gave more thought to the social implications of their actions, we would have a much better Australia to live in.
    particolor
    17th Apr 2015
    5:35pm
    One Employer told Me If He wanted to look at a Galapagos Tortoise He would have went to the ZOO !!
    Mak
    17th Apr 2015
    10:42am
    There is discrimination, I have been involved in the situation and I put it down to,
    1. The people who hire and fire are in most cases a younger age, and fear the greater knowledge and abilities of the older applicant.
    2. If the people who hire and fire are many more years younger than the applicant, they want someone who moves in similar 'circles' as themselves in manners of clothes, 'cool-speak', music, entertainment, holiday destinations etc; and the ability to work diligently and efficiently is almost the least important requisite.
    As an exercise, compare the efficiency of a senior customer service person to a juvenile in the same position and seek the approximate age of the business owner and/or manager.
    Try also to receive the change from a juvenile in a monetary transactions without them referring to the calculator in the cash register. (tell the shop assistant that the change is wrong and to correct it from a mental calculation, or do it yourself and further confuse the person, and don't even begin to ask for legible writing or spelling.)
    Phoenix
    17th Apr 2015
    12:17pm
    Hi Mark! You are absolutely right 100%! Thank you for voicing out on age discrimination.
    particolor
    17th Apr 2015
    5:47pm
    Your Right all Right !! The tills went down in Coles one day ! And I said Jokingly "Get the Book out " And then I woke up I Don't thinks She would know what to do with the Bloody thing ?? :-) We all had to leave with Nothing !! I went to IGA !! :-)
    wally
    17th Apr 2015
    10:44am
    Government policy to end ageist discrimination in employment reminds me of the ""Belling the Cat" discussion held by the assembly of mice. Much talk and agreement about the necessity of doing it, but not much about the details in accomplishing it.

    If the Commonwealth government applied a quota system declaring that a certain percentage of the work force in the civil service were to be of a certain age, it might be a start. Perhaps greater creative efforts in making up excuses in denying oldsters job opportunities might be one side effect. But it might be a start. After all, it appears to have changed employment opportunities for other minorities, including women.
    Chris B T
    17th Apr 2015
    10:45am
    What planet have they being living on, not earth.
    Age discrimination has been around for over forty years, some others on this site will tell you it's longer.
    The only reason the government is sheepishly making some noise about age discrimination to promote their agenda.
    The 70 year olds in the work place, not all can sit on there bum's and have advisers do the work for them and don't have read anything.
    Christine
    17th Apr 2015
    10:49am
    Of course there is discrimination, and very serious discrimination. How many MORE studies do we need? We need solutions. I proposed a suite of solutions to all my local MPs, state and federal, labor and not labor. No-one was remotely interested in talking solutions. You can't make people employ older people if they don't want to. Solutions must be based around self help of the demographic affected. Baby Boomers are a very highly skilled group, but there iS no support to help us help ourselves and actually solve our own problems. We are required to become victims and go begging to the welfare sector to rescue us. No thank you. A bit of dignity and respect please.
    Phoenix
    17th Apr 2015
    12:25pm
    Hi Christine, I am now 61 yrs old and was forced to take the VR after 6 years of workplace bullying (plus I am ethnic as well). I fully agree with Mark's comment above. I have been unemployed and had only a couple of weeks temping work in Nov last year 2014. The Government is myopic and rant about its stupid policies that one would die of disgust! Thank you for sharing your views and comments re "age discrimination". I even went to CIT to improve and enhance my tech skills but employment isn't forthcoming.
    particolor
    17th Apr 2015
    5:54pm
    3 Ticks and an A PLUS + for that ! :-)
    tj
    17th Apr 2015
    11:16am
    Why do we need to have a commission for this when everybody knows it exists and has done for eons .Look on the bright side though, think of all the snouts in the trough for just another talkfest.
    tj
    17th Apr 2015
    11:18am
    Meant to say that this should generate bit of income for someone
    Hasbeen
    17th Apr 2015
    1:57pm
    Yes T, the commission should employ a few aging, incompetent, surplus to requirement academics. They have to find some way of getting them out of our universities, clogging up the promotions list.

    It should also sweep up a pile of useless arts graduates, sticking them behind a computer in a nice modern office somewhere.

    Incidentally I would not have employed myself aged over 60, in any but a senior management job. Yes I was great at solving problems & planning strategies, but it needed the enthusiasm of younger [but not too young, about 40 is good] people to put them to work.

    What the hell you are supposed to do with an aging mechanic, bricklayer or carpenter who's back has gone is something you'll need some smarter than an aged professor, in a commission somewhere, to figure out.
    Chris B T
    17th Apr 2015
    2:10pm
    Let them do IGR report presention.
    Dr Karl's in the bracket your talking about.
    particolor
    17th Apr 2015
    5:38pm
    tj.. Just another OINK! OINK!! SLURP !!! :-)
    particolor
    17th Apr 2015
    5:59pm
    Ill bet they get a Crinkled up Old Judge for the Commission ! Who needs a Top Up for His Humongous Pension ? :-(
    Virginia
    19th Apr 2015
    6:52pm
    Please go to a manned checkout in the stores SAVE A JOB> DO YOUR BIT
    Bill
    17th Apr 2015
    11:23am
    I fully agree with Mak's 1st point and most of his second point, especially 'the ability to work diligently and efficiently is almost the least important requisite' AND it has been going on for years, at least since the late1980's, because I too have seen this attitude in action. Then it was the voluntary retirement caper. Those "managers" etc who didn't want to go OFTEN would not have been employed elsewhere so they didn't know much (ascertained by talking to them) or, they craved the power they had. True.
    AND I agreewith most of what Christine has said. To legislate is easy, to have enquiry after enquiry looks busy and fair dinkum but unless attitudes by employiong bodies change, nothing will.

    It seems to me from the ripe old age of 63 that most (not all) employers would rather have someone sit on the backsidesall day and do nothing that pay an older worker to actually do something for that might mean you'd have to pay a higher rate of pay. I might add here that there are places out here (Orange N.S.W.) who prefer older workers - at least they have a work ethic, they turn up, work and know what they are doing. I also think that emplyers might be just a little intimidated by the difficulty there is when it comes to sacking people that you don't want, are redundant or simply not pulling their weight.

    Like it or not, us, the baby boomers (yuk what an expression) were not handed everything on a plate, life and work was not a fun thing (well, not all the time .... something had to be done) and we had common sense, could work unsupervised and quite simply saw what had to be done and did it. I am not so sure about a LOT of the kids in their twenties etc who need to have their hands held at every step and MUST be continually watched.

    Mind you, I do know of employing bodies who will NOT employ younger people for this reason. Oh, I here you say, discrimination.

    How about gioiving those of us a who want to work a choice. Entrance into a place of work is needed for those who WANT to work.
    micky
    17th Apr 2015
    11:24am
    I have a question yes I know that it is illegal not to hire a person on the grounds of their age. The employer therefore can not ask an employee their age. what about when a person is filling out an application form and therefore is being asked their date of birth on the form. is the applicant required to fill out the date of birth on the form and therefore the employer once he/she reads the application form knows the applicants age straight away?
    RosePerth
    17th Apr 2015
    11:31am
    If it's a company that routinely doesn't employ older people it won't make any difference. Even if you get past the application form stage, they'll have a "valid" reason of one kind or another to NOT employ you if they don't want to. No amount of studies or enquiries into the subject will make a scrap of difference. You can't force employers to employ anyone they don't want, no matter how misguided that policy might be.
    KSS
    17th Apr 2015
    3:51pm
    Micky they are NOT allowed to ask your age so if DOB is asked for on a form don't fill it in. Another thing to do is rework your CV as a skills/accomplishment based document i.e. focussing on the skills you have and achievements rather than the more usual consecutive date ordered 'list' of jobs/positions held. That way you don't have to put dates next to the employer. Any half-wit can add dates and work out you are 'over 21'. Although maybe not given the number of forms that ask for both DoB and age!!:-)
    particolor
    17th Apr 2015
    7:25pm
    If they say you look far too old for the job ,tell them that You have had a Hard Life !! :-)
    Katie
    17th Apr 2015
    11:57am
    My friends are all starting to experience age discrimination now they are over 50. Particularly women who are coming out of a divorce and may not had full-time work prior. Also employers only employing casual is making it difficult for predictable employment. Some are juggling 2 and 3 casual jobs, because they can't secure permanent full-time. Then it becomes difficult to please all 3 employers in terms of availability. Most of the time friends are culled out at the resume stage for full-time positions - assuming after 50 they are of no value. Also the bigger picture - Govt needs to find a new revenue stream to fund retirement - maybe stop selling profitability govt utilities and actually create new ones that can fund future pensions. Running Govt is a business - and they are meant to increase revenue making opportunities - look at Sydney Airport's revenue - they sold it off for a song, whilst holding back the Corporation from making more money while it was Govt. Govt is there to generate revenue to meet community expenses. Selling off Govt utilities is now affecting the ability to meet future expenses - i.e. Pensions for the Over 65s. Corporatised Govt Utilities are a balanced blend of entrepreneurial and govt ownership, enabling growth in revenue for Australians when they make the focus profitability. It's a win/win for the community. If politicians stop selling revenue-generating Govt Utilities off to their mates in the private sector.
    Anonymous
    17th Apr 2015
    1:28pm
    sorry Katie but the government should not be in the business of running anything that can be done be done effectively by private sector - history has shown they are run better - I was caught up in one of these in early 90s but was lucky to transfer over - I do agree with you though that when sales have been made govn has not always got best deal (but to me not surprising as public service negotiators are no match for private sector negotiators - I saw this on several occasions. With iron ore prices lower federal govn needs to look at revenue sources BUT spending must be reigned in - hard because no one wants to give up anything once they have it - so while we have debt I suggest all govn departments have increases frozen to CPI increase until budget is balanced - everyone has a 1% debt and deficit tax imposed upon them as well (those on benefits have 1% taken off them) - all politician wages frozen until budget is balanced - salaries for senior executive public servants reduced by 10% to be applied when a person moves on this might embarrass private sector to bring down salaries particularly CEO level - perhaps sell ABC (save $1b) - also GST on everything - the LDP senator listed more ideas but are labor/liberal up to make the big changes. Last point utilities in govn hands are inefficient
    MITZY
    17th Apr 2015
    5:22pm
    bob Menzies: As Mr Hockey cannot foresee a date when the government will be out of the debt it will be a bit hard expecting ALL of us to pay a 1% debt and deficit tax (not our fault they are in the mess, they created it) or pollies wages to be frozen until the budget is balanced and the rest of the sectors including the CEO's etc. to earn less when they move on (they might as well stay where they are). There would have to be a great increase in people's salaries and wages and a great increase in people's age pension if you start putting the GST on EVERYTHING. How does an age pensioner "solely" reliant on their pension to cover "all their basic needs" and bills (and there are many among them in this category) cope with a decrease in pension, a 1% levy and an increased GST?
    Anyhow this is beside the point, its getting away from how to create jobs for the "older worker".
    Something I read recently indicated that NURSES could now be one of the most heavily impacted industry sub-sectors as older workers move into retirement The average age of Australia's nurses is increasing, with nearly ONE IN FOUR now AGE 55 OR OLDER! There are plenty of graduates ready to slot into the system and they bring enthusiasm with them, but no experience.
    Maybe now, because the retirement age is gradually working its way to 70, some of these experienced nurses could remain in their profession on a part-time basis to guide the inexperienced (but not physically do the heavy lifting). This would mean that currently they could stay on the job part time, enjoy more leisure time,
    earn a little more, contribute to superannuation still (if the super laws expand the age limits) and feel totally useful in their "older" age.
    There are lots of industries that this approach could be couched and maybe, just maybe, the employer would be accepting to it, because they know the worth of that older worker who is about to retire. We all know that more often than not the older worker is more reliable, dedicated, loves working and could instil their work ethics into the younger ones coming through to replace them. Its a win win situation for both the employer and the employee.
    Just a thought. Have a read about the LDP Senator and his attitude in the past with other affiliates.
    MITZY
    17th Apr 2015
    5:33pm
    Katie: Agree with you, not all government utilities are better in the hands of private enterprise. You can google that question and get an array of opinions about the subject. I hate the thought of the electricity being run by private enterprise as they do cut corners in order to maintain more profits. I often wonder what would happen if terrorists happened to infiltrate this and some other government utilities. This day and age this type of assault could happen. If certain services are kept in government hands there is a better chance of a quick response to quell situations from other government sectors.
    There is an enhanced thinking to shrink public services etc. and yet when I started work so long ago, the public service was probably the largest employer and we all had a good wage, saved and spent, nobody was out of work and in fact we didn't have enough workers for the jobs available. Then greed took over and look at us now. An older worker these days is made to look and feel older by the way they are treated when it comes to retirement age. One size doesn't fit all, some people are fit and spritely at retirement age but others due to their type of work are not, and if they are expected to work longer, then the governments of the day will have to find ways and means of re-training them. The onus lies with them.
    Anonymous
    18th Apr 2015
    6:48pm
    Mitzy - it saddens me but for the most part I think your right - and your idea is as good as any suggested - however my experiences suggest govn utilities are always better run in private sector - more efficient, less waste and better productivity
    Art
    17th Apr 2015
    12:09pm
    Of course there is age discrimination in the workplace and it will only be overcome with education and an attitudinal shift on the part of business managers who are responsible for hiring. I have been running a temp agency in the Northern Rivers of NSW for 5 years now and have been lobbying both sides of the Federal Government to do something about providing initiatives and incentives to employ mature age people on a part time basis but nothing has been done. The whole focus of the multi-million job service provider system through Centrelink is on finding full time jobs for people under the age of 55. 99% of the seniors registered with my agency are interested in working part time, a few days per week and there are lots of employers who really only need an extra pair of hands for part of the week because they can't afford another full time employee who may not be fully occupied all week. Why can't we put these 2 needs together and make both groups much happier? The answer is because the bureaucrats can't be bothered to change the rigid rules that drive the Centrelink system. What a pity.
    Phoenix
    17th Apr 2015
    12:15pm
    I just want to say that I fully with Mark!
    Christine
    17th Apr 2015
    1:27pm
    It seems that we are all agreed that there is a problem. So why don't WE get together to brainstorm solutions? Why do we have to wait for someone who doesn't want us to change their attitude? They won't. It's time WE changed our own discriminatory attitudes to one another; we are our own worst enemy, and WE must start to work respectfully together to solve the problem for ourselves.
    aly_rob60
    18th Apr 2015
    4:18am
    Best and quickest answer to that, Christine, is to STOP voting for the major parties and send them a message that they are wasting OUR money on useless inquiries!!!

    Talk about "jobs for the boys"!!!

    Endless inquiries about this and that.....how about, look after the YOUNG Australians (after all, they are are future). Incentives to keep them at school, without it costing them or the parents a fortune, would be a good start!

    At age 54 and having worked since I left College in 1978, I "am over" working full time and sure as hell am fed up with writing endless job applications for jobs that I know I will never get!

    I know what I am talking about...I have been unemployed for over 3 years now! And that is despite going back to school and re-skilling.
    bohanka
    17th Apr 2015
    2:22pm
    I spent years trying to find suitable employment after being retrenched but found age discrimination a very real factor in my lack of success.

    Eventually, I found a decent job overseas. I'm currently fully employed and in constant demand in China where age is regarded as an asset, not a liability. I have no intention of returning to Australia until I reach retirement age because I know that there is no way a man in his early sixties will find suitable work.

    I refuse to put up with the discrimination I experienced purely because of my age.
    aly_rob60
    18th Apr 2015
    4:27am
    Smart, very smart! Leave the country, then come back later and get a pension.....the very thing we intend doing too!

    Would rather make tax contributions to another country rather than give it to the tossers that think they are running this country.

    Australia has completely lost the plot.
    bohanka
    18th Apr 2015
    2:45pm
    I just wanted to add that I must have heard literally thousands of reasons why I wasn't suitable for the job but I was never told the truth of the matter and that was that I was, in my potential employers view, too damn old!

    Large companies should be required to employ a certain quota of employees over a certain age to ensure that age discrimination becomes a thing of the past.
    Linuxisfree
    17th Apr 2015
    2:39pm
    I AGREE with the comment that there is substantial discrimination against seniors and those approaching that time in life. I have a number of degrees from the well known larger Australian Universities up to and including Masters levels in a range of subjects including Finance, Economics, Accounting, Software engineering, law and mathematics. Have held very senior positions in large companies and have never been sacked from a position but have failed to even get an interview for several years now. Employment agencies tell me it is solely my age that is the problem. I have offered to relocate if necessary. I have no other handicap than my age (which is between 60 and 70 BTW). I am fit and active but alas have now given up trying. Result....I draw an aged pension.
    My understanding is that this is not the case in most other countries where the value of skills and experience are not discarded by artificially and arbitrarily applied used by dates. (OBMT) Old before my Time
    marls
    17th Apr 2015
    2:49pm
    i find it difficult to understand the big deal expecting older people to stay in employment when no one is expected the young and capable to find jobs. if older people want to work thats fine and should but when is the gvt going to stop all these young fit people from participating drug taking, sitting infront of the tv or playing video game whilst us oldies are struggle on a daily basis
    MITZY
    17th Apr 2015
    5:41pm
    marls: us oldies would earn more money and pay more tax, thus reducing the welfare bill. The youngsters and depending on what they work in (apprenticeships) are unreliable, get paid less, pay less tax etc. The oldies if they can get them back in work will cost the government a lot less than the money they fork out for Newstart.
    The government would be hard pressed to get them to do work for their unemployment benefits, if put into the right type of work in this respect, they could possibly learn something and then progress to becoming a genuine work seeker.
    Jules
    17th Apr 2015
    2:51pm
    I became surplus at the age of 61 in a government position where it was mandated that a person was to be placed if they could perform a task with training. The last position I applied for was within the Justice Department for a Health and Wellbeing Officer. I had pioneered a Health and Wellbing Program at a previous place of employment. The department was undertaking a program of conducting seminars to the private sector on employing older people. I did not get the job. A younger person did. I ceased looking.
    Christine
    17th Apr 2015
    3:02pm
    But it seems that we are useless old stick in the Muds with no initiative or creativity left - or at least the rest of you are! After all, if we were worth our salt we would take up the challenge of working together as a group to solve our group problem with creative and imaginative solutions. If we want those young things to solve our problems for us we have just proven their perception that we are pathetic. Here are just two ideas that fit into a much bigger infrastructure. http://mawtth.blogspot.com.au/, and quirkynation.blogspot.com.au
    mardi
    17th Apr 2015
    3:06pm
    There are jobs that are more suited to the older people when they can "no longer lay bricks'. Take a look at the 'Bunnings' older emplyees!
    Perhaps O.P. can be retrained in similar positions. Jobs need to be created to suit the older people.
    Mardi
    This may level the 'discriminations'.
    Ayers Rock
    17th Apr 2015
    3:24pm
    I support Human Rights Commission Works. But a conclusion should not be delayed for many years for an investigation reason. Reason is obviously there. No delay is needed. The Entrepreneurs do not want to employ older than 50 years of age. Proofs? Zillions of proofs are out there. Just advertise and ask the older people for the proofs to be collected.

    Solution: Bring a job quota number of percentage which dictates some percentage of the job quota be allocated to older Australians if they are not in Pensioners officially. Start with the Companies which hire more than 1000 employees and/or taking government business subsiding, tax offsets, grants whatever... Do not run such investigation and privileges in favor of the who came from etc. Otherwise we may end up some unwanted situations of Old South Africa which was very out of human rights platform many years ago.

    Note: Also make the citizenship probationary period not for 4 years but for 12 years min for permanent residents and for other legal immigrants. Otherwise Australia may become quick jumping board for other reasons rather than true blue citizenship and feeling responsible obligations.

    Best Wishes and happy jobs and Justice for Older and Younger Australians...
    Tombo
    17th Apr 2015
    3:37pm
    It's fruitless trying to prove that age discrimination exists. Of course it does. The real question is why it exists. And the answer is that age inevitably brings with it certain characteristics that are unlikely to attract employers. Generally speaking, the older people get more they tend to become slower, less energetic, less adaptable, less technologically savvy and more prone to ailments of various kinds. Again generally speaking younger people don't have these disadvantages. Of course there are exceptions in all ages but employers tend to play the averages. If you want to solve the problem of age discrimination you first have to solve the problem of ageing.
    KSS
    17th Apr 2015
    4:11pm
    Trombo you paint such a depressing picture of aging I have decided not to join that club! My Aunt died last year aged 104. Until almost the very end she was playing bridge (keeping her mind alert and active), she still swam in the sea (no slowing down in energy there), she had her facebook page and sent e-mails (technologically savvy there). I know people half her age who are less able than she at 104.

    You have fallen into the very trap of stereotyping and discriminating language that were are accusing the younger employers of doing. That is what needs changing and we, as the very older generation that is discriminated against, must lead the way. And not with platitudes such as '50 is the new 40' nonsense. People in their 50, 60, and above are not the same as people of the same age a generation ago.

    And just think, the younger employer seems happy enough to entrust their children to our age group to look after whilst they are the parent are at work, but won't trust us to serve a customer in their place of business! We are capable of so much more.Perhaps that's the real reason for age discrimination. The employer wants us at home looking after their kids! We have to get out and show them they are wrong and we are not just good for unpaid babysitting.
    Tombo
    17th Apr 2015
    4:13pm
    KSS, I am not stereotyping. If you read my comment you will see that I lace my remarks with 'generally speaking..' and 'of course there are exceptions..' I too have a father in law aged 99 who is fully compos mentis and active. I am talking about general perceptions in the employer community, although again there are exceptions there too, Bunnings for instance.
    Not Senile Yet!
    17th Apr 2015
    3:40pm
    People confuse Age Discrimination with Practical Discrimination and so To does the Government!!!
    Talk about the Pot calling the Kettle Black!!!!
    The reasons for people being so-called Discriminated against has more to do with the Governments Total Lack of Planning for the Transition to meaningful re-deployment ....whether within the current workplace or to a new workplace through re-training or up-skilling of current skills into training or mentoring!!!
    The present and Past Governments have made absolutely NO PROVISION in allowing re-skilling or up-skilling through training for the over 50;s whatsoever!!! They think upping the retiring age is the way out of paying anything more than the dole!!!
    Instead of leading the way by creating Programs to assist with the transition away from Physical Employment as one ages.....they ignore it completely like an Ostrich with it's head in the Sand hoping it will all solve itself!!!!!
    By the way ...the Government itself is the biggest OFFENDER and regularly uses it's exemption from Discrimination Laws to Downsize by offering packages to Older Workers without any re-training assistance!!!!
    Lead by Example I Say!!!! Put some Programmes in place to assist both the Older Employee as well as the Employer.....who may find it inviting to shift someone to Casual/Part-time 2-3 days a week rather than sack them.....into different but useful roles....even if only for the last 5 years before retirement!!!
    As for the Age 70 Retirement Age.....Completely useless and totally lacked any thought whatsoever....was just a cost cutting idea to avoid paying a Pension from 65 to 70 by paying only the dole instead!!! Basic stupidity and un- productive decision that was not thought through at all!!!!
    But then the Government does not want smart people.....they only want sheep.....take the wool and butcher them once they cannot produce mentality.....not an original thought whatsoever in parliament!!!!
    But then what do you expect from Party Puppets who are bought and Sold by the Party to screw over the Voters to get what the Party Machines Want!!!
    Ayers Rock
    17th Apr 2015
    3:52pm
    It is no secret that many HR responsibles or entrepreneurs turn down the job applications from the older Australians even without reading, just throwing to the rubbish basket.

    How to solve such wrongdoings or misbehaviors:

    1. Government releases job application and HR assessment forms for the older Australians Job Applications.

    3. Older Australian who seeks a job fulfills up these forms, and attaches to the job application letter and resume.

    3. HRs should register and record such filled forms and reply with true assessment and finding results to the applicant. If they had to consume such time for enormous number of applicants, HRs may be granted for overloading job compensations by the governments where needed. This prevents just simply throwing away the job application letters and resumes.

    If failed, give heavy penalty to the Companies. Charge 100,000$ penalty right away per offensive case , just a similar traffic fine. So, no company dare in such awkward behavior anymore!!! Now, with no penalty and ignorant behaviors of the current situation, many millions of older Australians Applicants' letters go to Shredding Machine right away even without being read ...

    Regards...
    SolJesse
    17th Apr 2015
    4:08pm
    Age discrimination appears in other things as well. I do surveys on the computer and the moment I put in my age (82) I find the survey closed or overfull etc. I am still working so my brain isn't quite dead yet. I put in half a day as an unpaid secretary.
    casper dude
    17th Apr 2015
    4:12pm
    We have lived and worked in the UK and in Australia. In the UK many older people are employed, especially in all their supermarkets, both male and female both in management and on the shop floor. Australia is way behind with age discrimination and employers must change their attitudes. It has been proven in the UK that older people have enormous knowledge to give to companies, they are more reliable to attend work and take less sick leave.
    mardi
    17th Apr 2015
    4:21pm
    When I was 65 I could no longer be employed. I'm now 80+ assisting on the fire field, Training members, can make many items in my workshop for the family and community and use a computer as good as anyone! Still unemployable!
    We are catalogued in correctly as 'old'.
    Mardi
    Mez
    17th Apr 2015
    5:31pm
    No good working after 60 if income protection insurance is unavailable.
    In fact, the premiums increase every subsequent year after 50 yrs of age!
    Yeahhhh....so what's the point!
    jackie
    17th Apr 2015
    6:33pm
    Politicians don't have real jobs otherwise they would not expect ordinary people to have to work till 70. Face reality, everything deteriorates with the aging process That's not discrimination. Let weary battlers retire in peace. They spent most of their lives working with blood, sweat and tears making others rich. Politicians pensions should be the same as everyone else's and means tested too.
    particolor
    17th Apr 2015
    8:00pm
    :-) :-) If they Means Tested them they would owe Back Taxes :-)
    aly_rob60
    18th Apr 2015
    4:22am
    Well said, Jackie!
    Oldmac
    17th Apr 2015
    7:12pm
    When I left the mine in NT as kids needed to be in schools, at age 42 (1984) I was told by the mob before Centrelink, I should expect that I would not work again as too old for most employers. I started my own business, then to Middle east until 60, then to China until 68. Now I am full-time Uni Law student. I dont expect to be employed but can certainly contribute to charitable organisations. I think "oldies" can band together and start some type of business . How old was Colonel Saunders of KFC when he started?
    particolor
    17th Apr 2015
    7:57pm
    HMM ? I dunno ? I'll Google Foghorn Leghorn and find out for You ! :-)
    Ayers Rock
    17th Apr 2015
    7:59pm
    Also another side of problem maybe all your aware of! For one open vacant position there may be 50 - 100 applicants, mostly from new grads from overseas students lurked by lust of opportunities promised them, and illusions directed by most markets. First something we all Australians stop such deceiving. The overseas students are welcome and study in Australia on mutual understanding basis in such, and work as to get experience for limited period which is not extendable automatically. They pay tuition, and in return they get the education, knowledge, and degrees, titles, cultures. This is normal balance. This is reciprocal beneficiary. If these people are lurked additionally, then the game is different something, dishonest, disillusioning and frustrating new young lives. Nobody has such right to deceive the others such. Older Australians are not only compelled by the lack of enough vacant positions, but also by the lurked young disillusioned overseas students. Their deception should be stopped as well. ( At last all chains are connected to each other).

    Regards
    Mandy
    17th Apr 2015
    9:54pm
    The government sets a very bad example as far as age discrimination is concerned. In their point system for immigrants, the points lost for age, makes it extremely difficult to emigrate to Australia once past the age of forty. So how can they be taken seriously when they try to stop age discrimination in the workplace?
    Rose
    18th Apr 2015
    12:51am
    Experiences I witnessed in a Commonwealth Government department re budgets in 'tough' times set around an expectation of 'natural attrition' ie those over 55yrs retire or reduce hours & when it doesn't happen they are targeted in various ways such that their work environment becomes so stressful & demoralising that they leave. There are a few skillful bullies operating at high levels in many of these departments who seem accountable to no-one & their actions are swift & sharp.
    aly_rob60
    18th Apr 2015
    4:20am
    Yes, my husband was targeted for being one of the older, long term employees of the Victorian Government and told they wanted "young go-getters"!

    phhht!
    Christine
    18th Apr 2015
    8:47am
    Everald Compton ran the previous enquiry And was a few months from handing down their report when Abbott got into power and stopped their funding. So this group, not to be silenced, crowd funded finalising the report. Clearly they were not ideologically aligned with the current bullies in Canberra. This also tells us that Susan Ryan IS aligned with this un-australian government. What the whole saga tells us is that we must solve this problem ourselves or remain victim to the vagaries of political ideology. Why is no-one contributing to this "whingefest" willing to consider working together to create new businesses by baby boomers for baby boomers? Deal with it. THEY are never going to fix this for US. WE have to fix it for ourselves.
    Christine
    18th Apr 2015
    8:48am
    http://everaldcompton.com/
    Christine
    18th Apr 2015
    9:03am
    I don't agree with everything this man says, but he makes a lot of sense. But I would have thought that his recommendations align with Liberal Party ideology, which makes it all the more surprising that Abbott silenced him. Stopping this report when so close to being finished means that there MUST be an agenda other than solving the problem. http://percapita.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/BlueprintForAnAgeingAustralia.pdf
    Katie
    18th Apr 2015
    10:41am
    The primary indicator for discrimination in the workplace is DOB. I applied for a Working With Children and the employer uses 3 criteria to look up the approval with the RTA - one of those criteria is DOB. Until DOB becomes as confidential as Tax File No. i.e only allowed to be accessed after employment - then age discrimination will stay covert. Govts at all levels need to secure this piece of information from common use. DOB needs to be treated on an 'as necessary' basis - not a common piece of information. Then if employers can't access it until employing, at least it will minimise rather than hinder. Also a Senior Wage could be introduced - i.e. like the Junior Under 21 Wages - maybe an over 65s minimum wage. This would be a minimum for new positions - not existing. Obviously cultural education needs to be employed to overcome age bias as a nation - we did it in workplaces regarding Discrimination and Sexual Harrassment - so it's possible to employ the same workshop strategies for Age Discrimination. Also as we age, it's important not to believe we are better or superior to younger colleagues. Everyone needs to be respected equally; even if it's not returned immediately. Example goes a long way, long term.
    Christine
    18th Apr 2015
    10:56am
    I don't agree With you about concealing age. We should be proud of our age. All Potential employers interview anyway, and there is nothing worse than turning up for an interview and seeing their eyes go blank as soon as they see you. You both know that the next half hour will be a tortuous "going through the motions". You only have to be "blanked" once to never conceal your age again.
    Christine
    18th Apr 2015
    10:58am
    I also don't agree with being paid less. I am VERY VERY good at what I do and worth every cent of what I should be paid. You are actually advocating discrimination.
    Christine
    18th Apr 2015
    11:02am
    Also there are some ways in which WE ARE better than our younger colleagues. You may not have gained much wisdom in you 40+ years in the workforce, but as a contractor across all work sectors for the last 30 years, I certainly have. I expect to have my say and I expect to be heard.
    Chris B T
    18th Apr 2015
    4:45pm
    Good try Katie, unless the person interveiwing is blind you won't get past that stage. So concealment of DOB only pevees them of more, if you happen to make to the interveiw stage.
    Not many have poker faces.
    Cruisaholic
    18th Apr 2015
    6:28pm
    Interesting topic!
    I am passed retiring age and in the aftermath of the GFC have been forced back into the workforce. I was forced to take a long hard look at myself and what prospects I had.
    If I was hiring a worker would I hire someone in their thirties or an old age pensioner? The answer is obvious, so I priced myself accordingly and have had steady contracting work since.
    Some of the comments posted here belies belief! A couple of quotes come to mind, "the older I get the better I was", or "I am a legend in my own mind", if someone is hiring they are going to go for the best worker legislation or not. There are not enough jobs to go around so legislating to stop discrimination is not going to work.
    I can see that a way out of this is to drop the wage for elderly workers, this is the only way that employers will hire the elderly.
    Christine
    18th Apr 2015
    6:35pm
    Yes, and let's drop the rate for women, bungs, wogs and crips while we are at it. Equal pay for equal work USED to be a catch cry of our society. So now you are saying we SHOULD accept discrimination?
    Cruisaholic
    18th Apr 2015
    7:11pm
    Why do we have a youth wage? You pay for what you get. What is an old age pensioner worth?
    I am a contractor and in steady employment, in fact the most personally rewarding work I have had in my life.
    I will freely admit that I am not as fit or agile as I used to be, I cannot handle long hours.
    My working conditions are that I set my own hours and come and go as I please, I am very experienced in my field. I do not believe I am worth the same as someone half my age, therefor I set my contracting rate at a lower level.
    mardi
    18th Apr 2015
    7:27pm
    I agree that older people may work slower than younger people. To pay them less won't help them pay their bills(maybe then they need govt assistance.)
    Their health would benefit from the work and govt wouldn't have the health burden!
    In the least we have a"hornets nest" here.
    Older discrimination needs to be addressed!Now!

    Mardi
    Snow
    18th Apr 2015
    8:20pm
    There is absolutely discrimination because of age. I worked for a company that when a new CFO started he got rid of everyone over 40-45 years of age, me included. Older workers have a wealth on experience and knowledge. Stupid idea to not employ older workers. Luckily for me it worked out well I got a much better job where I am appreciated and have the potential to move up the ladder. However the government are totally hypercritical as take away benefits for single parent like myself but give us no help whatsoever in finding full time employment.
    Snow
    18th Apr 2015
    8:24pm
    I do not agree that older workers work slower than those younger, to me it is the total opposite. Younger workers seem to take forever to do anything and seem to have tunnel vision. I do more work and take on extra work than those younger than me where I work.
    Young Simmo
    19th Apr 2015
    2:06am
    This is an interesting topic and I have only just dropped in.
    To start with, I am 75 years old, planned on working to 65 years, but had a triple Bypass at 62, and Rio Tinto decided I would be a wreck and refused to renew my contract. The DUMB b**st**ds didn't know that with a rebuilt engine I would be twice as good. Anyway with no choice I have been retired since 2002, and enjoyed every moment of it. I fined that being retired takes all day and there is no time left to do anything constructive.
    OK, that is probably not entirely correct as I am up to 2,000 games of Spider Solitaire at 100% win rate, Yehaaaa.
    Like most people born around 1940 and coming up through the ranks I never really had a Super plan in action, but we are cruising. That is because we live in a Park Home in a caravan park and have no Rates and Taxes Etc, Etc, Etc. Most Pension days we save 2 to 300 bucks for car rego and things, and am slowly getting ahead.
    LIFE IS A BALL.
    Abby
    19th Apr 2015
    6:58am
    I would like to know just what this so called anti Discrimination Commissioner Susan Ryan is doing beside collecting the Taxpayer funded salary ???

    Appointed in 2011, Susan Ryan sat back and watched the Labor Government then and Liberal Government now discriminating against the Seniors of Australia.

    What is the point of an Anti Discrimination Commissioner if she allows this to happen .... too busy making sure her job remains safe ??? Making sure she gets another Government appointment ??
    Christine
    19th Apr 2015
    7:08am
    I tried to get some kind of support from her for my proposal. She would not even read it and fobbed me off onto a staff member who told me she was too busy trying to work out how to insure the over 65s so that the retirement age can actually be raised to 67. That challenge, it seems is a full time job for her and her staff. Yep, government puppet!
    Christine
    19th Apr 2015
    7:16am
    This is a summary of my dialogue with her office. http://mawtth.blogspot.com.au/p/dialogue-with.html
    Abby
    21st Apr 2015
    9:16am
    Thanks for the link Christine
    Reading through that I could swear you were conversing with a politician.
    Chris B T
    19th Apr 2015
    9:26am
    There is one observation to come from age discrimination and no one has stated.
    The older worker is usally the one who trains or mentors the young and inexperienced in the work place. It is the oddest of situations, that once the trainings complete that they become redundant. The new techniques in communications are not to be used as an excuse to remove or not employ older workers, as young can struggle as well.
    Protection in employment is paramount and employment of older workers a dream.
    Ideas, are just that, some good others just ordinary. Young and old can have them.
    Virginia
    19th Apr 2015
    6:50pm
    We all assist unemployment when we go through self service checkouts. SAVE A JOB spend more time and go through a manned checkout PLEASE
    mardi
    19th Apr 2015
    7:14pm
    Yes Virginia, self checkouts take jobs from local people. Jobs and money go to the upkeep of the machines! Not good for local residents of towns.
    The signage on the reg. checkouts now says 'assisted checkout now closed. please ...(find another or use self checkout') How demeening!

    Mardi
    micky
    20th Apr 2015
    11:07am
    I am aged 70 and in the process of applying for a part time job on the employment form the employer has asked for my date of birth and a recent photo how legal is this? it will tell the employer straight away how old I am. what can I do if I am refused employment? I have all the skills and qualifications
    Christine
    20th Apr 2015
    11:15am
    It is pointless to conceal your age. As soon as they see you, it is evident, and they will never employ you without seeing you first. In addition, I gather there are insurance complexities for those over 65, so they really must know what your age is. I address my age very overtly in an application and tell them why my age is an advantage. That hasn't helped much either, but it is better than grovelling. If we hide our age, then we are adding to the discrimination by ourselves implying that we are not good enough at our current age for the job.
    Possum
    21st Apr 2015
    10:23am
    In regards to discrimination against older workers I couldn't agree more. I am 57 and was made redundant 18 months ago. I have been actively looking for employment since and have been to numerous interviews which have been based on my experience. Upon fronting at an interview the negative body language I am welcomed with is so in your face. I have had interviews where the CEO of an organisations have had no interest in what I have had to say. The stigma of stereotyping is still well and truly in alive today. We, the mature workers, should be employed for our abilities, experience and knowledge not our age. Instead they want for better wording (a little pretty) to fill their chair. I am so over this stigma. I have many good years to give to the workforce and nobody seems to take into consideration that my last position was for 25 years so I am not likely to up and run I want security.
    paquicamus
    21st Apr 2015
    1:51pm
    I agree with Young Simmo and Old Mac, you have two choices: retire and enjoy it or do something about; create your own job, study and put into practice for money, charity or whatever you want. At 72 have done both and it is great. Ah, do something for your own kids by looking after the grandkiddos. At LEAST we have the choice to be happy. I should add: there is an age discrimination but it would require the effect of everyone to solve by choosing the right government or making them to do something about through VOTING.
    In essence life is beautiful and we should try to enjoy it. Cheers everyone!
    Christine
    21st Apr 2015
    6:47pm
    Please be aware that people on "Newstart" get $150 per week less than those on an age pension. It is impossible to live on it and there is no help for mature age people forced to live on it for extended periods. It is set at a level to force people back to work, but that presumes there is work to be had once your age starts with ab5 and even less chance if it starts with a 6. There is no relief until we finally reach 65 and can afford to live again on the vastly more generous old age pension. ????
    HappyDaze
    21st Apr 2015
    3:42pm
    I am a career rail professional.
    I am under 60.
    I have had a few months work in the past three years.
    The recruitment companies are owned and run by English 'Mafia' who target their own first (my parents were English and here I have no discrimination as such). Australia is flooded with those people who stay on take our jobs.
    I have tried other arenas (councils etc) and interstate.
    One place I worked, had 80% of approx 100 employees who were on 457Visas. Most were suffering in silence and comments like "is this how your country treats people". I am still owed a lot of money.
    I am annoyed that I must use up my super which is meant for my retirement years.