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Maybe you've lost your job. Maybe you're just worried about it. Or you just feel subtle pressure to step aside and let the young people move on up. Can you be fired because you make more money than a younger colleague? Do you have to laugh along with those digs about your age? What's against the law and what isn't? And what can be done if you think you are a victim of age discrimination?

Robert Lipsyte sits down to get the answers from the experts. Vincent J. Roscigno, Professor of Sociology at Ohio State University and author of The Face of Discrimination: How Race and Gender Impact Work and Home Lives, describes the emotional toll on older employees who get laid off. Michael C. Harper, Professor of Law at Boston University and a leading authority on labor law and employment discrimination, argues in favor of stronger legal protections for vulnerable older workers. And Jacqueline James, research director of the Center for Work and Family at Boston College, speaks up for what's great about seasoned employees: loyalty, reliability, good networks and work ethics.

Next, Lipsyte talks with TV legend Phil Donahue. Donahue fills us in on his latest project: his documentary about wounded veterans of the war in Iraq. The twenty-time Emmy Award winner says he does not miss the spotlight. Why? Because "it's nice not to have to jump out of a cake every day." And what's not-so-great about getting older? His hearing isn't what it used to be, Donahue confesses. Plus "it's harder to get out of the car."

Then Life (Part 2) hears from author and Columbia University Professor of English and Comparative Literature Edward Mendelson who explains the dangers of labeling older people-and why he finds one term of derision to be particularly offensive.



Nice topic on this site. I've been reading all of your comments. I agree of that. I just experience also lost a job because of bankruptcy.

It's true. Ageism it a big

It's true. Ageism it a big problem in today's society. Especially with people's working years no lasting longer and with more elderly people in the work force.

Dr Roscigno speaks very convincingly on this topic.


I agree with it though, thanks for informing us.

Great informative post thanks

Great informative post thanks for sharing.....
A Level Coursework | Admission essay

I agree. Particularly about

I agree. Particularly about the required age-revealing information in some (but interestingly, not all) online applications. If some employers can choose not to ask for age-revealing information (other than if you are of legal age to work), why can't all? It seems to me that if revealing other possibly discriminatory information such as race or sex is optional for the applicant prior to an interview, then it should also be not required to reveal date of high school graduation or more than 10 years of job history, for example, prior to an interview. And in order to prevent across-the-board discrimination against anyone who does not volunteer this information, I would even suggest perhaps no age-revealing questions should even be asked prior to an in-person interview. I do not understand why I do not hear more about this in the press. I also wonder why I'm not hearing about more older unemployed workers writing their congresspeople about this.

True Enough

We cannot deny that companies would always want younger employees, like they always wanted new software and new way of marketing.

Most of them make good use of old people on the management side. I don't know how to make stand on this since both parties have strong argument.

However, I am planning to make an in-depth study on this.

Ageism in hiring

I am an unemployed staffing and HR professional. The laws need to cover on-line applications that force "applicants" ( you are simply trying to submit your resume however) to tell how old they are. For instance, when filling out these applications to submit your resume, they will not ask how old you are, but will ask what year you graduated from College. You cannot click the submit button and have it complete the transaction if you leave this blank. You cannot lie about the year either because you are also forced to sign an " I agree" or "disagree" clause that states any mis-representation is cause for immediate cancellation of "application" or dismissal from position hired for.
Also, where age is concerned, asking for GPA is discriminatory as well. I'm a smart individual but was a terrible student way back when. For older applicants it is essentially meaningless. This needs to be corrected as well.

Any thoughts?

I agree

The older worker in many cases "DO NOT" make more money.....younger people are being hired making more money, because they demand more money now days, that previous workers.


Getting fired because of your age is total bull. This is basically the same as losing your job because of your race, religion, sex, etc. Stronger laws would provide some much needed support against this but it would not change the fact that older people will still be discriminated against. It takes along time for society, in general, to change the way they think about things like racism or other forms of discrimination. In some cases it will never change. Ageism, although similar to other forms, has its differences as well. It will, at some point, affect everyone, not matter race, sex, or religion. Because of that, it is important we give it more attention and figured out the best way of preventing it.

I like his words: "when you

I like his words:
"when you have less time to loose you've got more world to win" He is totally right.

getting fired

I am 57 and was recently laid off by a huge, profitable law firm. In my satellite office, I and four others were laid off -- ALL WOMEN. Three of us are over 55, one is African American and the other was recently out on disability and had just returned to work the week before. This SO still goes on!

getting fired

I'm 58 and I was recently laid off by a Publishing concern,and am not sure if I was chosen because of my age.....(I was one of 18 let go)

Women at work/and now SENIOR CITIZEN

The older worker in many cases "DO NOT" make more money.....younger people are being hired making more money, because they demand more money now days, that previous workers...also
when your an older worker and a woman, they use the excuse you are making your time I did not get a raise in 3 yrs, but my supervisor, not only got large raises, and $50,000. bonus during this same period. I know because I transfrerred to another department "ACCTG" and I had to pack up the controlers desk when she left...and I saw the paper work. So it DOES go on...its not fare. While I was working hard, the supv. would go out for lunchs, come in late, go golfing, and get tuns of perks...
This goes on rampid in the Insurance industry...and my guess is in all industries. My husband was disabled, I had to retire early to care for him. We now only have our Soc Sec to fall back on. We have no savings, no 401K, no pensions, nothing. I worked my hole life, got my producers license, which i was held back from using in 2 companies I worked for, and they only used my talents for back up, assistant work. Because I was good at getting the job done. Maybe that was my fault...but I was raised to get the job done and work hard... Which is excactly what I always did.
For what....I have nothing now.
Ms. Stanton
Oak Lawn IL

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