Not surprisingly, age discrimination remains alive and well in the workplace. Workers continue to receive limited protections through the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967. However, through the years, the loophole-filled act has been weakened by rulings from the U.S. Supreme Court.
Age discrimination in the workplace also is difficult to prove. Employers may rely on underhanded tactics by stating that their reasons for terminating or demoting an older employee were due to a reorganization or simple cost-cutting. As we know, many longtime workers are some of the highest paid and among the oldest within a workforce.
EEOC received nearly 13,000 age discrimination complaints
Workplace age discrimination occurs when an employer treats an employee less favorably merely due to his or her age.
In 2021, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) received 12,965 claims of age discrimination violations. Such claims have declined each year since 2016 when 20,857 age discrimination complaints were lodged.
AARP survey: more than half asked by employers to submit birth date
Last year, the AARP conducted a survey investigating the existence of age discrimination in the work force for people aged 50 or older. The organization interviewed nearly 3,000 adults within that age group. The survey findings include:
- About 15% of respondents claimed that in the past two years, an employer did not hire them because of their age.
- A total of 53% said the prospective employer asked them to provide their birth date during either the interview or application.
- A total of 47% noted that employers asked them to provide their graduation date.
- Roughly 17% received negative comments about their age while working.
- A total of 13% claimed that an employer passed them over for a work promotion.
As more Americans stay in the workplace longer, they gain the not-so-desired chance of facing mistreatment through age discrimination.
Gather evidence, seek an attorney’s advice
If you know or suspect age discrimination from your employer, protect yourself at every step. Document every single incident and workplace slight that will add credibility and evidence to your case. Then, reach out to an experienced and aggressive attorney.