Creating Work Opportunities For The Over Fifties, As The Retirement Age Carries On Increasing

September 25th, 2010

This month has seen the publication of a report from the Pensions Policy Institute, recommending that the normal retirement age be raised over seventy, in order to enable the government to maintain the amount spent on pensions at the levels from twenty years ago. This is worrying, as it could mean that some people will have to give up the idea of ever getting a pension and may have to carry on working for the rest of their lives. Furthermore we should bear in mind a further issue: what kind of work is likely to be obtainable by older people? There exists a huge degree of discrimination against older people in the jobs market, and a lot of over 50s may not be able to either work or qualify for a pension. However there is a possible solution in the area of Internet business, where they can work from home in a wide choice of online jobs.

Employers as a whole appear to have a preference for younger employees, although they also seem to ask for a long period of prior work experience. One person visiting an employment agency was informed they were ‘long in the tooth’ although they were just 35. Discrimination on the basis of age is technically unlawful, and yet it is very difficult to prove when it has occurred.

Despite this, life expectancies are higher today than in the past. Granted that everybody considers it to be desirable to lengthen lifespans as much as possible, there does not seem to be much consideration of the implications in terms of a lot more money needed for paying people in their old age. A second issue is that low birth rates mean that there aren’t going to be enough economically active people working and financing the pensions of a proportionately enlarged number of retired people.

The reality is that National Insurance doesn’t go into a fund for the payer’s old age, it is employed to pay directly for today’s pensions. Basically it is just an ‘IOU’ note for those paying, and there is the possibility that when today’s younger or middle aged people arrive at retirement age, there will be no money left to provide these people with their pensions.

The Age UK charity has indicated that the number of jobless people over 50 who have remained out of work for over a year, has increased by more than half in the past twelve months, indicating the more severe effect that the downturn has had on the older workforce. 75% of long term unemployed older people are men, so it seems that the women in this generation may be more successful in finding part-time or temporary work. The situation could be made more serious by the addition of three quarters of a million older people now classified as able to work as they are no longer eligible for incapacity benefit, as part of measures to cut the government’s deficit.

So what advantage could online jobs in Internet business bring to this problem? To start with, it is definitely a field where ‘silver surfers’ can make as much of a contribution as the young, and the greater experience they bring to bear might also be beneficial. Secondly, such jobs enable people to work from home, so people who do have disabilities or mobility problems could still take up in such positions.

Discrimination against older workers might be partly down to subjective prejudice. If you see someone and think they are past it, then they are not likely to get the position. In Internet business you can’t see the person you are dealing with, and you cannot tell how old they are, so you don’t form a subjective opinion based on that information.

In view of raised pension ages and the unemployment crisis, the issue of employment for the older generation will not resolve itself automatically. Opportunities to work from home in the online jobs created by Internet business may not provide all the answers, however they are a genuine choice for a lot of older people.

Be Sociable, Share!

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Filled Under: Jobs and Careers