It is oftentimes important to an employer to find experienced employees. Finding someone who has more experience in your industry may mean looking at workers who have had more years to climb the ladder and gain and develop new skills. With that in mind, employers should be aware of certain laws that provide protection to older workers in the workplace.
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) protects workers who are 40 years of age or older. You can find more experienced employees by respecting the rights of older workers. Here are some tips to ensure your business abides by age discrimination protections.
Discourage Hostile Behavior
It is important to ensure that your company culture respects everyone. If someone reports harassment against one of your supervisors or employees, you need to carefully review these allegations. Harassment occurs when colleagues, managers or even clients or customers make frequent and severe comments about/against workers. For example, harassment can include offensive or derogatory remarks about an individual’s age. While harassment does not include simple teasing or offhand comments, you should discourage all incidents and foster an inclusive and welcoming workplace environment.
Abide by Age Discrimination Laws
The Age Discrimination in Employment Act (“ADEA”) prohibits age discrimination against people who are age 40 or older. The law prohibits discrimination in all aspects of employment, and age discrimination involves treating an applicant or employee less favorably because of his or her age. For example, employees over the age of 40 should not have to worry about hiring, firing, promotions, layoffs, training or any other aspect of employment simply because of their age. It is important to ensure all of your supervisors or managers understand, and are familiar with, the age discrimination laws. Discrimination does not only occur if the supervisor is younger than the victim. For example, both parties can be over the age of 40 and one can still discriminate against the other.
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