The Elderly and Job Applications -

The Elderly and Job Applications

In some countries it is now illegal to reject someone applying for a job because of his or her age.
Do you think this is a positive or negative development?

It is now fairly common to exclude the age of a job applicant from an application form so that the selection of a candidate is not based on this criteria. I view this as a positive development.

There are certain reasons that an employer may feel this is not a step in the right direction. The main one is that they may feel they need to know a person’s age because the job is not suitable for an older person. This, for example, could be because they think there is a need to be very physically fit, such as work within the construction industry where heavy lifting is needed or other work where someone is expected to be very (1) active all day.

However, as a general rule it is better if rejection on the basis of age is not permitted. Although some jobs do need younger people, many employers will simply reject a candidate unfairly. For instance, they may simply be concerned about the image of the company and think a younger person will fit the face of the company better even though an older person may be just as capable of carrying out the role.

Another reason is that older people have things to offer employers that younger people may not be able to. If it is a job within a particular field, such as law or accountancy, then the older person will have many skills in this area through working in it for so long. In addition to this, they will also bring a wealth of life experiences that a younger person may not have, which is also beneficial to any role.

All in all, it is therefore a positive development if employers cannot reject someone because of their age. Hopefully more countries will adopt this rule so older people have equal opportunities everywhere.

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The commentaries are marked in brackets with number (*). The numbered commentaries are found below. The part in italics is taken from the text, the word underlined is the suggested correction. Words in (brackets) are the suggested addition to the original phrase or sentence.

  1. This is the only recommendation I could come up with – you used ‘very’ in two consecutive sentences. Consider using a different intensifier.

An impressive piece of writing! Top-notch grammar and lexis, tight structuring, adequate length and virtually mistake-free, this essay is a rare example of work with no weaker points. Well done!