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Older workers frequent victims of workplace discrimination

With age comes wisdom, but not necessarily job security. Despite years of skills and experience, workers older than 45 years old still face rampant workplace discrimination in Wisconsin. This is true not only employed workers but also for the unemployed who are seeking work. 

The AARP conducted national survey with adults 45 years and older and found that 61 percent reported experiencing or witnessing age discrimination in their place of employment. Of those, 38 percent said they thought age-related discrimination is commonplace. With workers over the age of 50 predicted to make up 35 percent of the workforce by 2022, this is a serious issue. 

Age discrimination takes several forms. About 25 percent of older Americans reported being on the receiving end of negative comments about their age while at work. Another 16 percent said they were not hired for a position after employers were made aware of their age. At least 12 percent report being passed over for promotions and opportunities to move forward in their careers. Because of the widespread nature of age discrimination, workers could be worried about retaliation, as only 3 percent of victims report these issues to HR or supervisors. 

With decades of experience and knowledge, these workers are invaluable pieces of the Wisconsin workforce. However, they still face ongoing workplace discrimination, which can be especially disastrous for those who are nearing retirement. Victims who have suffered financially because of discrimination can recover related damages through the successful actions of a civil suit, which can also influence necessary change that protects future workers from similar outcomes. 

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