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  • Do you think age discrimination will increase after coronavirus?

    Much of the press around the coronavirus has been centred around it impacting people more as they get older. With age-discrimination already an issue, we’d like to hear our members’ opinions:

    • Do you think this could make things worse, even after the coronavirus has passed?
    • Have any of you already experienced discrimination or push-back because of the coronavirus or
    • Are you confident that the fight against age-discrimination will continue to progress?

    Do share your thoughts, below.

    Posted by Helen Burns
Viewing 12 reply threads
    • Reply by hirst2112

      Absolutely, they can deny all they want but age discrimination is rife not only in the work sector but in lots of other places as well in hospitals as patients is terrible

    • Reply by fionj48

      I think it has already! 😰

    • Reply by devman825

      The answer is Yes more now than prior. I have completed over 20 technical tests just to get an interview, passed all and got to first round then suddenly I get the polite email that they have chosen a different candidate. I learned very quickly best not to put your education on your CV, that way you have a chance that you will get the opportunity to get an interview. To give you an idea the test take approx 2 to 3 hours to complete then you have go through a hour with a junior developer, an hour with a senior developer, an hour with a senior management and if your lucky an hour with HR department. A very time consuming process. A week later another agency would contact me for the same job at the same company, strange how the job is still available. I find if I do not do a video interview I have a better chance of getting to the next round.

      I returned home to UK in 2016 after being away for 34 years. Getting close to now having to make a decision to look to another country other than the UK to work. With my hair turned grey the opportunities are less and less, maybe I should start my own company just for over 50 developers?

      Just my thoughts


      • Reply by Helen Burns

        Dame Stephanie ‘Steve’ Shirley started a software company in 1962 where she employed only women, who were mostly married with children, because they had very few employment opportunities available to them. In a time where these smart and capable women were being relegated to domestic duties, Steve gave them an opportunity to use their talents, working flexible hours programming from their homes. Together, they built a very successful business, in which everyone shared in the rewards.

        Maybe your idea has some merit!

    • Reply by jo6

      We now live in a throw-away society and I feel the older we get the more dispensable we become.

      I am almost 60 and have been out of work for 11 months, apart from a couple of short term temporary roles. As soon as agencies work out your age (and some do still demand a date of birth) they make all the right noises but they’re not interested – even when it comes to jobs which match your experience exactly. On one occasion, when I queried why I hadn’t been put forward for a post I’d seen advertised, I was told I “don’t meet the demographic for that particular client.” If that’s not telling me I’m too old, I don’t now what is.

      Despite applying for virtually every job within my capabilities, since Covid-19 started, I have had one dire Skype interview and one letter of rejection. I can’t see it getting any better and quite frankly it’s soul destroying.

    • Reply by elspethnewlands

      I am appalled at the ageism in the UK. I returned to UK last year after spending 15 years in USA (Hawaii). When I went there I was 50 years old and thought I would struggle in the job market.

      I easily found work and at the age of 58 started our own business which we ran for 7 years.  There wasn’t even a tiny bit of ageism there and you would find people working in every category at age 90 and above if they felt like it. On the downside Hawaii was expensive so many people choose to work into their 80’s and easily could! It was refreshing to see that your experiences counted for more than your age.  Some stores actively sought mature people.  It is the complete opposite of what I have experienced here.
      I think after Covid it will be unfortunately worse

    • Reply by 1jacquelineandres

      I saw some figures a few days ago saying that the over 50’s accounted for about 54% of employment in the last year. I think as someone posted there is alot of experience and work ethic in over 50’s.

    • Reply by Lara

      Definitely! Although it is understandable, and correct in fact, that fewer jobs means those with families to raise need to be at the front of the job queue.

      I strongly believe that, as older members of society, we have to use the benefit of our years of experience, and the wiliness gained, to focus on creating work…

    • Reply by jimjazz

      Since you posted this question, in the UK at least, the government has signalled that their focus is on getting younger people back into work; before they find themselves lumbered with the tag of “long term unemployed”. I can understand this. However, I do believe this will lead to further unconscious bias against those of us heading towards retirement age. Paper qualifications seem to trump experience.

      With so much uncertainty surrounding Covid-19 – not least no one having the foggiest idea for how long it will be around – employers will be looking to second guess what the future holds and hedge therir bets against falling foul of the worst the upcoming recession will deliver. So, inevitably, with older people more susceptible to the virus we will be regarde with a degree of suspicion.

      Sorry to sound so gloomy and negative, but as the old saying goes “a pessimist is an optimist in possession of the facts”!


    • Reply by paul.rwilliams

      I’m 51 years old now and for the past 10 years I have struggled to find work. I’ve had some temporary work and part time work. Now find myself redundant again due to the coronavirus. It is certainly very difficult to find work in this age bracket. I fear that I won’t be able to find work to give me an income and save for my retirement. So much is being made at the moment about black lives matter movement but ageism is rife and completely forgotten about.

      • Reply by yvonne.lyons

        Hi Paul, I know what you are talking about having experienced ageism in the last job that I did. The younger ones were credited and rewarded because they were faster in IT than me but they didn’t always know how to deal with people which I think the older employees including myself, were much better at due to experience and maturity. Despite this, I complained because progress in the company was always given to the younger ones but I couldn’t afford to take an ageism case against the company, because at that time the wonderful Mr Cameron had made it so that you had to pay £1000 to take a case forward (later thrown out by the European courts – I think), which I couldn’t afford to do. Right now it’s very scary as to, if this predicted recession occurs, where we will all be. However, persist determinedly and I hope that will bring you what employment that you need,

        Take good care,


    • Reply by lena.gazey20

      Yes, I think that discrimination is bound to increase.  Unemployment is going to rise, and it is to be expected that younger people will be favoured for any jobs available.  I might say I even think that is quite right that they should be.  A person of 68 may be struggling on a pension, but at least they have a guaranteed income; someone of 48 with a family needs a job to maintain that family.  In volunteering also older people may be edged out – a problem for the charities since some of them particularly have long depended on the retired sector.  I worked a final shift at Oxfam on the Wednesday before lockdown began and was sent home at the end of it with the news that they could no longer let me work there as I was over seventy and “at risk”.  I am fit and well and would rather make my own choice of risks, but it seems that I am not allowed to do so.  I do not know at this stage whether the policy of “no over seventies” will continue; I hope not, for the charity’s sake as well as my own.  They will find it hard to continue without us – or maybe we’ll be replaced by the unemployed.  It’s going to be a very different world.



    • Reply by pamelamartin

      I am 65 and hate age discrimination! Please younger people Think before calling someone an old lady or old man. I don’t feel old and it hurts!

    • Reply by mmzbrown14

      I work in the medical profession and I disagree – any decisions about medical treatment here is Scotland are based on quality of life, survivability and being able to tolerate anaesthesia and/or other invasions into the physical body.

      Age along with many other factors are discussed based upon the aforementioned criteria.


    • Reply by tracyspencerca

      I’m not sure if it will be age or whether it may be those who look at you sideways if you’ve tested positive for the virus. I feel that society as a whole discriminated against older people before this was a crisis.
      ive witnessed first hand that once you are over 70 s that you can quite easily passed over to even get the same medical options as someone who may seem to have a “better” chance at survival.

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