New age discrimination laws in Taipei are set to be released later this month.
According to Workforce Development Agency Director-General Huang Chiu-kuei (黃秋桂) the draft act will focus on five main areas:
- prohibiting age discrimination,
- helping employees secure stable employment,
- helping unemployed workers find jobs,
- helping retired people re-enter the workforce, and
- creating job opportunities.
Is age discrimination a problem in Taipei?
According to a survey carried out by jobs website yes123, 42.2% of companies are unwilling to hire a middle-aged or elderly worker compared to an equally qualified younger person.
A massive 75% of companies said they would consider age when recruiting.
Ageing demographics require a new policy perspective
Taipei’s population is ageing. The nation’s working-age population — those aged 15 to 64 — began to decrease in 2016, the National Development Council’s population estimate report said.
Eventually, as its population ages, employers will have no choice but to engage older workers.
But rather than be forced into hiring older workers, Taipei employers should embrace the skills and experience that they have to offer.
National Taiwan University Graduate Institute of National Development associate professor Hsin Ping-lung (辛炳隆) says that the Taipei government should push for policies that encourage companies to hire more older applicants. Policies should not frame older workers as a disadvantaged group that needs help, but instead solve the problem of age discrimination through promotional campaigns that highlight the benefits of hiring older workers.
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