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New guide to help keep older workers working

Graphic: Older man shares a laugh with a young man with disabilities

The guide has been developed in recognition of the fact that there are five generations working side-by-side in the modern Australian workforce.

A new guide for employers on how to harness multigenerational workforces to improve the bottom line has been released by the Australian Human Rights Commission.

The toolkit supports employers, managers and human resources professionals to understand their responsibilities, the rights of older workers and the economic benefits for hiring older workers.

Multigenerational workforces: a guide to the rights of older workers under the Age Discrimination Act 2004 (Cth) was developed by the Commission in partnership with the NSW Government.

It recognises that in Australia today there are five generations working side-by-side in the workforce.

"Australians are increasingly working – and wanting to work – as they age," said Age Discrimination Commissioner Dr Kay Patterson.

"But data shows that 30% of employers are still reluctant to hire workers over a certain age – and for most of those that age is 50," she said.

NSW Minister for Seniors John Sidoti said it makes no sense to have such a highly skilled and experienced section of the community sidelined from work.

"Research shows that potential employers too often overlook, poorly manage and disregard older workers," Mr Sidoti said.

"That's why we've worked with our partners at the Australian Human Rights Commission to develop a toolkit to help employers recognise and reject unlawful age discrimination and start discovering the benefits of older workers."

Mr Sidoti urged employers to use the guide as a first step in changing their workplaces for the better.

"Employers have the power to build broadly skilled, multigenerational workplaces that contribute to longer, healthier and more productive working lives for Australians," he said.

Date: 9 August 2019

Source: Australian Human Rights Commission

Image credits

  1. Older man shares a laugh with a young man with disabilities - Nathan Anderson on Unsplash