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Discrimination, labour markets and the Labour Market Prospects of Older Workers: What Can a Legal Case Teach us?

Weller, Sally Anne (2007) Discrimination, labour markets and the Labour Market Prospects of Older Workers: What Can a Legal Case Teach us? Work Employment and Society, 21 (3). pp. 417-437. ISSN 0950-0170

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Abstract

As governments become increasingly concerned about the fiscal implications of the ageing population, labour market policies have sought to encourage mature workers to remain in the labour force. The ‘human capital’ discourses motivating these policies rest on the assumption that older workers armed with motivation and vocational skills will be able to return to fulfilling work. This paper uses the post-redundancy recruitment experiences of former Ansett Airlines flight attendants to develop a critique of these expectations. It suggests that policies to increase older workers’ labour market participation will not succeed while persistent socially constructed age- and gender- typing shape labour demand. The conclusion argues for policies sensitive to the institutional structures that shape employer preferences, the competitive rationality of discriminatory practices, and the irresolvable tension between workers’ human rights and employers’ property rights.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: ResPubID13803. ageing population, discrimination, recruitment, older workers, flight attendants, Ansett Airlines
Subjects: Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > Centre for Strategic Economic Studies (CSES)
FOR Classification > 1401 Economic Theory
SEO Classification > 9199 Other Economic Framework
Depositing User: VUIR
Date Deposited: 12 Jan 2011 00:43
Last Modified: 23 May 2013 16:46
URI: http://vuir.vu.edu.au/id/eprint/3437
DOI: 10.1177/0950017007080006
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Citations in Scopus: 12 - View on Scopus

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