Old and young people in the Philippines will have equal opportunities to get employed under the proposed “Anti-age Discrimination in Employment Act.”

House Bill 156, authored by Rep. Edwin Olivarez (1st District, Parañaque City), will protect those who suffer age discrimination.

Mr Olivarez said, “In the face of rising productivity and affluence, older workers find themselves disadvantaged or discriminated against their efforts to retain employment or to regain employment when displaced from their jobs.”

Under the proposed law, an employer who refuses to hire, or who dismisses, any individual by reason of age shall be guilty of age discrimination.

“It shall also be unlawful for an employment agency to fail or refuse to refer for employment, or otherwise to discriminate against any individual because of age, or to classify or refer for employment any individual on the basis of age,” Olivarez said.

Employers with less than 20 employees shall be exempted from the age discrimination laws.

The act of segregating or classifying employees, which will deprive individuals of employment opportunity or otherwise adversely affect the status as an employee because of age shall be punishable by law.

The measure also prohibits the employer from reducing the salary of any employee by reason of age.

The new age discrimination law will be particularly tough on trade unions. Any trade union that excludes or expels from its membership or discriminates against any individual because of age shall have its registration suspended for one year for the first offence and cancelled for the second offence.

Also, an employer, labor organization or employment agency who prints or publishes any notice or advertisement relating to employment, membership or any classification or referral for employment indicating any preference, limitation, specification or discrimination based on age shall also be penalized. Those who contravene age discrimination laws face imprisonment of one year and/or a fine of not more than P500,000. 

Article from Philstar