Why Doesn’t Age Discrimination Count in U.S.?

At the end of the month, most employers with more than 100 employees are required file a form with the EEOC revealing diversity and job category information about the race/ethnicity and gender of their workforce.

But companies are nUnemployment Benefitsot required to tell the EEOC anything about the age of their workers.

The EEOC lacks the type of critical data about age that it collects and uses to prevent and hold employers accountable for race or sex discrimination.

 This is yet another way that age discrimination is ignored and rendered invisible in the United State.

According to the EEOC, the information from Equal Employment Opportunity – 1 Reports (EEO-1) is used to:

  • “… support civil rights enforcement and to analyze employment patterns, such as the representation of female and minority workers within companies, industries or regions.”; and
  • “…to determine which company establishments to select for compliance reviews.”

Employers must provide statistics with respect to the number of minorities and women in their workforce and in what capacity they work. This is significant because it puts informal pressure on employers to hire minorities and women for “careers” rather than jobs.

For obvious reasons, employers are loathe to tell the EEOC that 16 of a company’s 17 African-American employees work the janitorial pool or 39 of the firm’s 40 female employees are secretaries or administrative assistants. It looks bad. This provides an incentive for  employers to actually recruit and hire minorities and females for professional “career” positions. Continue reading “Why Doesn’t Age Discrimination Count in U.S.?”

EEOC Should Require Employers to Report Workers Ages

justiceBy September 30, most U.S. employers with 100 or more  employees  must file a report with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) divulging the race, ethnicity and gender of its workforce.

The EEOC uses the data to support its civil rights enforcement efforts.

But employers are not required to provide similar statistics with respect to the ages of its workers, which is yet another indicator of the second-class status of age discrimination in America.  The problem of age discrimination in employment is not even considered serious enough to monitor.

If employers were required to report the ages of workers, it would be obvious when  a rogue industry- like Silicon Valley’s high tech industry – employs a disproportionately small number of older workers. Shining a light on age in the workforce would send a message to employers that age is an important part of diversity in a workplace. Continue reading “EEOC Should Require Employers to Report Workers Ages”