What is ageism? How does ageism influence the presence of diversity in society?
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Ageism is the natural course of getting old. All living human beings get old after a certain number of years. There are a lot of changes that accompany aging – body, appearance, conduct, health, and approach. Ironically, ageism is associated with various biases and inequalities in society as well as the business world. Due to the incessant innovations in science and technology life has become very fast and the human race has become so busy that people don’t have time for anything other than earning money and sustaining the global competition. In such circumstances, the elderly people – who don’t earn – are left in solitude. Society also doesn’t care for them because they are of no help.
What is the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA)? How does the ADEA address issues for the aging population?
The Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) was passed by the government in the year 1967. Since its inception, there have been several amendments and additions to the content of this act. The main purpose of this act – as is evident from the title – is to forbid “age discrimination in employment” (US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission par. 2.). A peculiar thing to note is that the age limit was initially set from 40 to 65 for people to come under the purview of this act. The upper age limit was later increased to 70 and finally, removed – though there are certain regulations (Byers 5). The ADEA applies to establishments that have “20 or more employees, including state and local governments” (US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission 2008).
What is being done to address the issues of aging?
Governments across the globe are trying their best – and whatever is possible – to prevent the unmoral practice of discrimination based on age in different spheres of life. Various laws have been made to ascertain the well-being of the aged. The United States government initiated its concern by bringing out The Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA). Some of the main features of this act are as under:
- Age discrimination in apprenticeship programs is illegal.
- Job advertisements cannot have any clause that mentions the age limitations for any particular job.
- Inquiries about the date of birth and age during job interviews are not allowed.
- Elderly employees cannot be deprived of any benefits.
- Only an employee can waive off his benefits – in writing.
As far as the discrimination in society is concerned, people are being educated on their moral responsibility towards their parents and other elders. The financial problems of the aged have been taken care of by initializing different pension schemes.
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Is the number of the aging population expected to rise in numbers or decrease?
As per the statistics, the world’s life expectancy is expected to rise with the years. The figures in Appendix 1 depict the United States of America’s population and life expectancy population every ten years. Detailed figures can be obtained from <http://www.worldlifeexpectancy.com/>. Also and as support for the statement, the table in Appendix 2 depicts the percentage of increase in the life expectancy of various states.
Considering the population statistics (2009) of the United States of America, elderly people (>65 years) constituted 12.9 percent (39.6 million) of the nation’s population. Population forecast shows that by the year 2030, the number of elderly people will almost double as compared to 2009 (“Aging Statistics” par. 1).
What types of legislation may or may not be affected by the aging population?
Governments make legislations based on the prevailing figures. Arrangements are made according to the current figures so that all the people can avail the opportunities and benefits. Certain facilities are not affected to a great extent by the increasing population of the targeted people – recreational facilities, etc. But there are certain benefits for which the governments have to allot a separate budget. Pension schemes and health care are two such areas where the increasing population of the aged can affect the governments’ efforts to a great extent. These two areas need a lot of monetary support from the governments.
How does poverty affect the aging population?
Old age brings with it a lot of health problems. As such, aged people need appropriate medical attention and care. The absence of sufficient funds for the poor people deprives them of timely and proper medical attention and care. This results in a lot of suffering for the aged people. As age catches on people, they become fragile and are unable to earn their livelihood. If their children know their moral duties they will be fortunate because they will at least have someone to take care of them. But if children disown their parents, it becomes very difficult or rather impossible for the aged to survive.
Aging Statistics 2013. Web.
Byers, Boyd 2007, Lordy, Lordy, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act turns 40. Web.
US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission 2008, Facts about age discrimination. Web.
US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. n.d. The Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967. Web.