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How can older workers deal with discrimination?

While it's commonly claimed that age brings about wisdom, many older workers are simply not respected in the workplace. In fact, older workers may even be discriminated against or pressured to retire to make way for a younger workforce. Glassdoor offers the following tips on how older workers should address discrimination if and when it arises.

Even if it's unjustified, there may be a fear that older workers are not tech savvy. You can dispel this myth by staying in step with the latest office technologies, with a focus on those that are unique to your specific industry. You can also try to expand your knowledge base in general, which shows that you're willing to undergo training in order to learn new skills. Highlight this willingness from the initial job interview to prevent any misconceptions from developing. 

If you're already in a position and concerned about ill-treatment, be proactive about asking for feedback. All workers have areas where they may fall short, and in some workplaces, management is slow to provide feedback in a reasonable manner. By seeking it out on your own, you're showing that you have a genuine interest in self-improvement. It also allows you to pinpoint weaknesses and work to correct them before they develop into serious issues. 

Despite your best efforts you might still be subject to discriminatory treatment. That's why it's a good idea to read up on anti-discrimination laws to ensure you have the right information at your disposal. Rules are established on a federal level by the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, which is in place to protect workers aged 40 and older. If you feel as though your rights have been violated, don't hesitate to make the issue known to human resources. If the problem persists, you may even want to speak with an attorney about your legal options. 

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