Ageist attitudes are the real barrier for over-50s

In your news story ‘TUC report claims one million over-50s are jobless through employers’ ageist attitudes’ (, 14 August), I strongly disagree with Susan Anderson’s statement that the over-50s lack the necessary skills in literacy and numeracy which is, in her opinion, why organisations do not employ them.

My experience is that, generally, older people have better basic literacy and numeracy skills than many school leavers and graduates. I think the problem is due to ageist attitudes that prevail in our culture.

Companies must educate their recruiting managers to open up their minds and become free of age bias. Only when these blocks are removed will UK organisations benefit from recruiting from a broad pool of applicants whose ages are disregarded and who are recruited for their skills, knowledge and experience.

Kay Jewell

HR development adviser, Resourcing Area of Expertise, BAA

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