Age discrimination in the workplace is a serious issue that can affect the well-being and professional opportunities of older employees. While this reality may be subtle and challenging to identify, there are certain signs and behaviors that can indicate the presence of age discrimination within a workplace.
If you have noticed any of the following red flags, consider seeking legal guidance to discuss whether the mistreatment you’ve observed and/or experienced can be classified as actionable age discrimination.
One of the most obvious signs of age discrimination is when employees are blatantly treated differently based on their age in the following scenarios:
- Promotions and Advancement: If younger employees consistently receive promotions, raises, or better opportunities compared to their older counterparts with similar qualifications and experience, it could be a sign of age-based bias.
- Hiring Practices: Pay attention to patterns in the hiring process. If younger candidates are consistently chosen over older, more experienced candidates without justifiable reasons, it may indicate age discrimination.
- Training and Development: If older employees are excluded from training programs, or professional development opportunities, or are denied access to new technologies or projects solely based on their age, it may be indicative of age bias.
Age discrimination can also manifest in the form of a hostile work environment, where older employees are subjected to unfair treatment, isolation, derogatory comments, etc. If an individual’s situation becomes particularly intense, they may be inspired to quit, which is a phenomenon known as constructive discharge.
Sometimes, being treated differently on account of one’s advanced age is lawful, but only under very specific circumstances, which is one of the most important reasons to seek clarification when navigating a discriminatory workplace.