We noted in our immediately preceding blog post that workplace reality “often features discrimination in both subtle and blatant ways, with the brunt force of discriminatory practices and policies often being aimed at older workers” (please see our September 30 entry).
Given that workplace truth, states a recent Forbes article focusing on age discrimination in workplaces across America, “it’s important for older workers to be aware of their rights on the job.”
That self-knowledge might logically start with awareness of the federal Age Discrimination in Employment Act. The legislation commonly referred to by the acronym ADEA specifically targets discrimination aimed at workers who are 40 or older. Key to note is that it applies to workplaces with 20 or more employees and is broadly expansive in that it safeguards against discrimination in virtually every aspect of employment (that is, hiring, compensation, promotion, training, termination and more).
Here’s a notable point about the ADEA: An aggrieved worker seeking to bring a legal claim under the act must follow the procedural requirements imposed by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Ultimately, a matter might be settled through EEOC intervention or by a court decision. An experienced employment law attorney can represent a discriminated older worker at all stages of a claim, whether it is resolved through settlement or pursuant to a judicially imposed outcome.
There are additional federal and state protections beyond those provided for through the ADEA legislation, as well. California legislators have introduced many worker safeguards over the years, and they can feature independently of or in concert with ADEA-related claims.
It is important for any worker with an age discrimination claim to timely consult with proven legal counsel, given that the procedural dictates and related administrative requirements can differ materially among various worker-protective laws.
As the above-cited Forbes article states, “If you believe you have suffered from age-related or other discrimination, contact an attorney as soon as possible.”