By Sandra Fredman, Sarah Spencer
To what quantity is age unavoidably associated with declining skill? What are the targets of a coverage on age equality, and the way can those be discovered in legislation? How should still legislation and coverage tackle age discrimination in health and wellbeing, schooling and employment? should still adolescents be handled within the similar manner as older humans? This booklet solutions those questions in a chain of chapters via specialists from quite a lot of disciplines. It examines the character of the getting older method and offers an in depth research of the idea that of age equality.
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Extra resources for Age as an Equality Issue
As will be seen, it is commonly argued that older workers should ‘give way’ to younger workers on the grounds that the former have had a fair innings. This makes it appear as if it is impossible to deal with youth unemployment and older unemployment simultaneously. However, it will be argued below that this is largely based on a simplistic representation of the labour market. Discrimination against older and younger workers in the labour market is reinforced by statute. 16 Workers under 18 are excluded entirely, and those between 18 and 21 receive a lower minimum wage than older workers.
Age-related issues which arise in employment appear to be quite different from those in health care, which differ in turn from education, social security and other public functions. For example, it could be argued that the chief aim of equality legislation in the employment field is to free the labour market from prejudicial and unsupported assumptions about the capability of a worker based on his or her age, so that the best person can be selected, promoted or retained. By contrast, the issues which arise in health care do not concern the relationship of age to capability, but instead the appropriate response, given limited resources, to the needs of individuals.
In the final section, I deal briefly with the ways in which these ideas can be translated into particular legislative forms. PROBLEMS AND PERSPECTIVES Background Until very recently, discrimination on grounds of age attracted little social opprobrium. Images of older people as dependent, burdensome and of no further use to society provided support for detrimental practices, such as early retirement and redundancy, rationing of health care, poorer quality social services, and social exclusion. Similarly, detrimental treatment of young people is frequently justified as being in their ‘best interests’.