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Corporate America has been kicking out its baby boomer employees like yesterday's newspaper.  Experienced, talented and capable workers in their 60s, 50s, and even in their 40s are finding it difficult or impossible to find the great jobs they had in the past, and deserve to have in the future, for one reason alone – illegal age discrimination.

Many people complain about age discrimination. But until now, no one has created and proposed an actionable platform with specific calls-to-action for each of the key stakeholders in the problem – the employees themselves, employers, and the government, both federal and state.
  •  Employees must be responsible for their own hireability, committed to learning the skills and earning the credentials necessary to be employed in today’s workforce.
  •  Employers must eliminate conscious and unconscious age discrimination in hiring, firing, retiring, and inspiring workers over 40, and reconfigure the workplace and job responsibilities to accommodate the needs and strengths of mature workers.
  •  Government must enforce and strengthen current laws, including ADEA and ERISA, better measure and report employment trends by age groups, provide medical insurance options for pre-Medicare-eligible individuals, and incent retraining of 50+ workers.
Defeat Age Discrimination.org was established to shed light on this crisis, create an actionable plan to overcome ageism, and enroll supporters and stakeholders to take definitive actions to make a difference.

 
We invite you to join us in the journey to change the way America hires, inspires and retires its most experienced workers.
3 Pillars of Responsibility To Eradicate Age Discrimination
Workers
  •  Take personal responsibility  for own skills development and training
  • Embrace lifelong learning and ongoing skills and expertise credentialing
  •  Maintain health, wellness  and physical fitness to be able to complete job responsibilities
  • Learn and embrace financial  management of assets to become financially stable and independent
  •  Embrace new team roles for  mentoring and coaching less experienced coworkers
  • Know what you want, why  you want it, and what's required to achieve what you want 
Employers
  •   Ensure the active adoption of antidiscrimination  practices at all levels of the organization
  •  Provide skills training and credentialing   opportunities to current workers for retention prioritization and certification
  •  Offer alternative benefit plans for Medicare-eligible workers, converting medical premiums to other services in demand by 50+ workers - including dental, life, disability, LTC, time off, sick leave, etc.
  •  Offer phased retirement options, alternative or pre-retirement working conditions to 50+ workers, including flex time, part time, seasonal, home-office or telecommuting options
  •  Institutionalize new team roles for 50+ workers to encourage cross-mentoring and coaching between workers of different ages 
  •  Ensure the workplace is safe and inoffensive to mature workers or those of traditional values
  •  Provide financial education, training and mentoring to ensure long-term financial security of the workforce 
Government
  • Take legal action to enforce ADEA with highvisibility employers
  • Eliminate Federal age discrimination  practices in hiring and retiring
  •  Prohibit age- and experience-based targeting of employment ads 
  •  Earmark a minimum of 5% of workforce development funds to mature workers regardless of income 
  •  Report employment date for workers 55+ in greater detail by age segments
  •  Provide affordable pre-Medicare health insurance options on a sliding scale towards age 65 
  •  Provide federal health insurance plans for independent contractors and self-employed
  •  Fund small business start-up skills development programs targeting 50+ workers 
  •  Require employment-based visa applications and  recruiting to be conducted through DOL jobs services agencies giving preference to US citizens
  •  Create broad and targeted educational campaigns  about the benefit or hiring mature workers 
Let’s change the way America hires, inspires, and retires its most experienced workers
Make a Difference
Every concerned American needs to take steps, small or large, to stop this illegal and unjust age discrimination. We will be launching a petition to the White House to take action at a federal government level, and will ask for your support. Individuals need to reach state and local governments with a strong message about the importance of taking action to reverse this trend. And company leaders need to ensure their corporations are in compliance with legislation, and just as importantly, strive to recruit and nurture mature professionals to maintain them in the workforce.
WHY BABY BOOMERS WANT AND NEED TO WORK LATER
The average retirement age in America today is 63, often because of mandatory or expected retirement age limits and corresponding cultural expectations. But with Social Security full eligibility age being pushed to 67 and soon to 70, and the average American lifespan extending into the 80s, workers will want and need to work theyll into their 60s and 70s. Medical insurance premiums for anyone 55 or older often cost more than $1,000 a month, especially if they have a pre-existing condition of any kind. That forces workers to find a job if only to keep their company medical benefits until they qualify for Medicare at 65. Otherwise they risk being devastated by exorbitant premiums in addition to huge medical deductibles for needed care.

Over the years, baby boomers have lost the traditional retirement safety net they were promised when they started their careers 30 or 40 years ago. There's no gold watch at the end of three decades of work like previous generations received. In the 1970s, corporate America realized that pension liabilities were huge and growing exponentially, due to the demographic trends of a much longer life span. So with government support, corporations shifted the retirement liability from their own pension funds to the shoulders of employees, in the form of voluntary IRA savings accounts. Those funds are now subject to the whims of the stock market, as many mature workers learned when a quarter of Americans 50 years and older lost all their savings during the 2007-2009 recession. 

So how will they handle the disparity of being unemployable 10 or 20 years before they are ready to "retire”? The numbers don't work, and they are caught in the crosshairs of a major demographic cataclysm that is imperiling the survivability of a whole generation of Americans.

This is the crisis – and it needs to change…NOW!
The Baby Boomer Financial Crisis That No One Is Talking About
One of the most dramatic changes in the workforce is the baby boomer generation, more than 76 million men and women alive today who were born between 1946 and 1964. Thirty-two million boomers are still in the workforce today, and 10,000 are retiring or losing their jobs every single day.
  
Life expectancy has skyrocketed from age 47 for a man born in 1900, to 67 if born in 1950, and to 75 if born in 2000. Life expectancy for a 65-year old alive today has grown to 83. Women on average live another five to six years longer than men.
The NRA (National Retirement Age) for Social Security was established in 1935 as being age 65. The average life expectancy of men born in 1900 – age 35 at the time at the time the law was enacted - was just 47. So Social Security was set up to support a small percentage of very old surviving workers for a few scant years of life, when many of their children were no longer alive or able to support them.

All that has changed as they now expect to live well into their 80s, and futurists project that a child born today will live to 100 or over.

One of the biggest changes the baby boomer generation has faced is the elimination of pension plans funded by companies, and the subsequent wholesale conversion of retirement responsibility from employers to individuals through tax deductions and token profit-sharing or by matching contributions to IRAs. Their savings can’t span the gap between being forced to retire from the workforce at 50 or 55, and obligated to fund exorbitant medical insurance premiums for five, ten or more years before being eligible for Medicare, and waiting until 66 or later for full Social Security benefits – which today average just $1,335 per person.   
Age Discrimination Exists – and Here’s Proof
There’s a good chance that age will hurt baby boomers’ job prospects, especially if they are in their 50s or older, based on a recent Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco study. Researchers created realistic, but fictitious, resumés for job seekers who were young (aged 29 to 31), middle-aged (49 to 51), and older (64 to 66), and sent out more than 40,000 applications for over 13,000 low-skill positions in 12 cities. Older applicants, particularly older female applicants, were much less likely to be contacted for interviews; in some fields, as much as 47% less likely.    

 
A 2013 AARP study found that almost 2 in 3 workers ages 45 to 74 reported experiencing age discrimination in the workplace.

Ageism is definitely alive and well in corporate America. Here’s more information to consider:
There’s A Growing Legion Of Long-Term Unemployed Due To Job Displacement
  • Of the 3.2 million workers displaced from jobs they had held for 3 or more years (2013 – 2015), 34% remained unemployed long term (BLS 8/24/16).   
  • The June 2017 unemployment rate for workers seeking employment was 3.2% for those over 55, but does not reflect the large numbers who abandoned their job search.
Employees Over 50 Have A Much Harder Time Finding A New Job When They Lose Their Old One
  •  Of those not re-employed, older workers fared worse: 40% of workers aged 55 – 64, and 63% of workers 65 plus were not re-employed, compared to just 37% of workers aged 25 – 54 (BLS 8/24/16) 
  •  It takes Boomers almost twice as long to find a job as a younger worker. In the 2014 Displaced Worker Survey, researchers found the odds of being re-employed decrease by 2.6% for each one-year increase in age. 
  •  According to AARP, the average length of time it took seniors to find a job was about 55 weeks. Those under age 55 averaged 28 weeks – half as long. 
  •  Federal Reserve economists interviewed by CNN estimated that only 1 in 10 job seekers per month find work after a year or more of unemployment.  
  •  The average professional career job search takes 6 to 24 months, per author Marc Miller.
When Baby Boomers Do Find Jobs, Half Are Hired At A LOWER PAY LEVEL
  •  Of the 66% of unemployed baby boomers that did find jobs, almost half (47%) received salaries below their prior compensation level (BLS 8/24/16)
  •  According to U.S. Department of Labor’s Chief Economist, Heidi Shierholz, workers between the ages of 54 and 65 earned 13.5% less in a new job after being unemployed for any reason. 
Boomers Plan to Work Later – If They Can Find Jobs
In coming decades, the share of seniors age 65 and older in the U.S. working-age population is projected to rise sharply — from about 19% currently to 29% in the year 2060 — approaching equality with the shares of those aged 25–44 and 45–64, according to AARP.
Boomers NEED to Work Longer
A survey released in 2017 by the Public Policy Institute of AARP found a quarter of Americans 50 years and older used up all their savings during the 2007-2009 recession. The study also found that 55% of the long-term unemployed say they will need to retire later than planned because of the recession, while 5% say the weak economy forced them into early retirement.

So, as a practical matter, baby boomers today need to work at least to age 65 until they qualify for Medicare, and much longer for the financial stability that will support them into their 70s, 80s and even 90s.  
News You Can Use
There is a slowly growing awareness of the pervasiveness of illegal age discrimination. Here are a number of current news articles and research studies that can provide insight into this crisis, and what’s being done about it.
 About Us
Defeat Age Discrimination.org is a newly-formed not-for-profit organization which arose out of the publication of REINVENT YOUR CAREER – Beat Age Discrimination to Land Your Dream Job, published in September of 2019 by Diane Huth.  
 Other Organizations
There are many other non-profit organizations that are working to prevent age discrimination in the workplace and offer employment opportunities to mature workers. Here is a partial listing. 
Contact US
DefeatAgeDiscrimination.org
Diane Huth, MA, MBA – founder
888-447-3632
Diane@DianeHuth.com
4855 Corian Springs Drive
San Antonio, TX 78247
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