If you have faced discrimination because of your age, you are not alone. Ageism is particularly common in the workplace: According to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), six out of ten older workers have experienced age discrimination at some point.
You should not let age discrimination discourage you at your job. In fact, this problem should encourage you to fight back.
Know the ramifications
In your workplace, you may have felt that you overreact to things that you perceive as age discrimination. Your colleagues may have convinced you that some jobs are more suited for the young and you should move on. However, people tend to overlook the harm that comes with this way of thinking. Research has linked age discrimination to worsened mental health and shortened lifespans, on top of the financial burden if it happens at work.
Know your rights
It is important to know your rights when you are dealing with age discrimination in the workplace. The EEOC prohibits employers from discriminating against staff or applicants because of their age, as long as the victims are 40 years of age or older. Some of the most common cases that the EEOC deals with pertain to forced retirement and benefit refusal. Other issues include age-based harassment, biased hiring and unfair job assignments. If you experience anything like this and you think it is because of how old you are, you should file a claim with the EEOC.
Age discrimination can be hard on anyone, but you can stop it before it becomes a bigger problem for you. Keep your head up and remember that you do have value at your job.