Many Older Workers Involuntarily Forced Out Of Jobs; Age Discrimination?

Many older workers, about 50% of seniors, aged 50+, were either laid off or forced to leave involuntarily from their long-held jobs, a recent study shows.

These results indicate that many of these senior workers will now encounter financial difficulties. This comes at a time when planning for retirement is most important.



many older workers




This study was done by The Urban Institute and Pro Publica. They analyzed data from the Health and Retirement Study (HRS). The study tracked 20,000 seniors, aged 50 and older, through the ends of their lives.

An analysis of this HRS data found that through 2016, 28 percent of those who had been working in long-term, full-time jobs when they entered the HRS were laid off at least once.

Another 15 percent reported that they stopped working because their pay, hours, and treatment from supervisors had deteriorated.

An additional 13 percent of these older workers retired unexpectedly. The researchers suggest that the  workers likely were forced out of their jobs.

Indeed, according to the HRS, the number of people who said they were forced into retirement increased from 33 percent in 1998 to 55 percent in 2014.)

In total, 56 percent of workers over the age of 50 in long-term, full-time positions lost their jobs involuntarily. Among the rest, 16 percent were still working, 19 percent retired voluntarily, and 9 percent left their jobs for personal conditions such as health or care giving.


Many Older Workers: Is Age Discrimination The Reason For The Layoffs?

According to the AARP, age discrimination seems to be the one form of bias that is still acceptable.

“But employers who push out their experienced workers do so to their detriment”,  says Susan Weinstock, vice president of Financial Resilience Programming for AARP.


Research shows that these employees are loyal, productive, motivated and possess the very ‘soft skills,” says Ms. Weinstock. The skills are calm under pressure and ability to solve problems; characteristics that all employers value.


Stay tuned.

Leave a Comment

14 − seven =