Government unveils plan to tackle age discrimination

Pensions
minister Ian McCartney has promised that the Government will deliver
improvements for older people in the workforce.

Speaking
at the General Federation of Trade Unions, McCartney said government research
into flexible retirement policies has helped build a new plan for older
workers.

"Taking
action to help older people is high on our agenda. One of our key aims is to
tackle discrimination and increase opportunities to help older people remain
active in later life," he said.

He
revealed a three-pronged Government employment policy, which aims to:


change employers’ attitudes to older staff through the Age Positive campaign


provide incentives for older people to return to work, such as the New Deal 50
plus


introduce legislation to outlaw age discrimination by 2006.

"In
order to retain a healthy economy, older people with their wealth of talent and
experience are a resource we cannot afford to waste. We need to see a major
shift in our working culture that recognises the benefits of a balanced
workforce," he said.

"By
retaining older workers, employers keep experienced staff with valuable skills,
have lower turnover and get greater flexibility and choice in their
workforce."

www.dwp.gov.uk  www.agepositive.gov.uk

By Ross Wigham

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