The New Yorker Wimps Out on Age Discrimination

An article on ageism in the November 20 issue of The New Yorker is oddly detached and completely misses the point.

For one thing, The New Yorker fails in the article, Why Ageism Never Gets Old,  to comprehend perhaps the major reason that age discrimination does not get old.  Age discrimination has its roots in the human psyche but is systematically carried out by individuals, public agencies and private sector employers who have little reason to fear legal consequences.

Age discrimination is rooted in the human psyche but is systematically carried out by employers with little reason to fear legal consequences.

Continue reading “The New Yorker Wimps Out on Age Discrimination”

If It’s Okay for Feds, Why Not Silicon Valley?

The EEOC apparently wants to crack down on tech industry employers who are engaged in blatant age discrimination in hiring but this goal may be complicated by the fact that the federal government also is engaged in blatant age discrimination in hiring.

PathwaysThe EEOC apparently wants to crack down on tech industry employers who are engaged in blatant age discrimination in hiring but this goal may be complicated by the fact that the federal government also is engaged in blatant age discrimination in hiring.

President Barack Obama on December 27, 2010 signed an executive order creating the Pathways “Recent Graduates” program, which allows the government to bypass older workers and hire “recent graduates.”  The program went into effect in 2012 for applicants who “have recently graduated from qualifying educational institutions or programs (2 years from the date the graduate completed an academic course of study).”  The U.S. Office of Program Management also has “reinvigorated”  the Pathways Presidential Management Fellows Program “for people who obtained an advanced degree (e.g., graduate or professional degree) within the preceding two years.”.

We all know the vast majority of recent graduates are under the age of 40. The term “recent graduate” is well-known code language for “older applicants need not apply.”

An EEOC official recently issued a thinly veiled threat to employers and employment agencies that advertise for “digital natives,” otherwise known as  post-millennials who under the age of 40.

Silicon Valley employers want to hire younger workers. The U.S. Office of Program Management wants to hire younger workers. What’s the difference? 

According to the OPM, the “Recent Graduates” program was necessary because the federal government has been “placed at a competitive disadvantage …compared to other sectors in recruiting and hiring students and recent graduates.” This seems dubious given that the “recent graduates” program was created in the waning days of the worst depression in a hundred years, when younger workers were facing double-digit unemployment. It seems more likely that the OPM wants an infusion of younger workers to replace older workers who are retiring. However,the OPM’s motivation for age discrimination should be irrelevant. Continue reading “If It’s Okay for Feds, Why Not Silicon Valley?”