As the Millennial generation continues to take up more space in the workplace, some may start to face the problem of ageism. This is already an issue impacting Generation X and Baby Boomers.
What does ageism look like in the workplace? In what ways does age discrimination tend to manifest?
Workers targeted by employers
Forbes discusses the problem of ageism in many workplaces. Ageism can affect anyone even in their mid to late 30s, though it most commonly affects workers in their 40s, 50s or older. Workers aged 40 or over have protection under The Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA).
Age discrimination can exist both inside the workplace between colleagues, or between the staff and the employers of a business.
When in the latter case, this often has terrible repercussions. As businesses seek to cut losses and downsize, they often target older workers, feeling that these workers do not bring as much to the table or cannot do as much because of their age.
When colleagues engage in ageism
When age discrimination exists between colleagues, it can result in workers attempting to sabotage or steal the work of a fellow employee. It can also include the creation of a toxic work environment due to the presence of rumors and malicious misinformation getting spread between people.
Fortunately, older employees have protections against any type of discrimination related to age, regardless of who it comes from or what form it took. It is possible to quickly take action and gain compensation for the unjust struggles that the worker may have faced.