For many older California workers, age is just a number. You may be older than other applicants or the people who work at your job, but that does not in any way mean that you cannot still do good work or add value to the company. Despite this fact, there are employees who have to deal with age discrimination at work.
Any type of discrimination is unacceptable. There is no excuse for acting in a discriminatory manner toward someone because of his or her age or allowing another person to do so. This is a real problem, and there is a federal law that protects your rights as an older worker. The Age Discrimination in Employment Act shields the rights and interests of individuals who want to work or find employment.
What this law can do for you
Unfortunately, employers sometimes view older workers in a negative light. Perhaps they don't want to pay for an older person's health care coverage, or they want to fill a valuable role with a younger worker. Regardless, you do not have to stand for any type of discrimination from your employer or coworkers because of your age. The ADEA prohibits the following behaviors:
- Employers cannot list an age limit or age range when posting a job unless it is a genuine condition for the job and a necessity.
- Employers cannot use age as a basis for making decisions related to hiring, firing, promotions, training and more.
- Employers cannot pressure older workers to retire, and they cannot take away or reduce the health insurance of older workers.
- Employers cannot retaliate or seek to punish older workers who report or file a claim for age discrimination.
If you think you experienced any of the above behaviors, you could have grounds to pursue legal action against your employer. It is possible to hold liable parties accountable for the unacceptable treatment you experienced in your workplace or while trying to find a job.
Don't stay silent
Some workers find the thought of speaking out against their employers to be an intimidating prospect. You do not have to walk through this process alone. There is significant benefit in reaching out to an experienced attorney to discuss the age discrimination you experienced and learn how you can move forward from this point. You do not have to suffer in silence any longer -- you can speak out for your rights and interests.