The ARC Centre of Excellence in Population Ageing Research (CEPAR) has recently released a fact sheet on legal protections for mature workers in Australia.
The factsheet outlines the national and state laws protecting mature workers from discrimination and upholds their right to seek flexible work arrangements. It also addresses the way workplace health and safety laws can be uniquely relevant to older Australian workers.
“Older Australians are vital part of the workforce and economy. Almost 20% of Australian workers are over the age of 55, and as the population ages, this proportion will continue to rise,” said Marian Baird, CEPAR Chief Investigator, and Professor of Gender and Employment Relations at the University of Sydney Business School.
“Older Australians, particularly women, are disproportionately primary carers of the elderly and those with a disability. Mature workers often juggle work and caring responsibilities, which are less well recognised than the child-caring role faced by many young workers.”
Professor Baird said many mature workers experience discrimination in the workplace.
“Policymakers have recognised that mature workers need special protections, particularly with respect to discrimination, flexible work, and health and safety, but more needs to be done in practice,” he said.
The new factsheet is available on the CEPAR website.