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Saga says 1.09 million over-65s in work

Yesterday Saga reported that there’s been a 36% increase in the number of over 65-year-olds in work since May 2010.

The number of 50 to 64-year-olds working was also said to have jumped 9% from 7.2 million to just under 8 million in the same period.

Saga attributed part of the reason for the increase to the abolition of the default retirement age.

The default retirement age of 65 was abolished with effect from 6 April 2011. The law changed from 1 October 2011 to mean that compulsory retirement on grounds of age now amounts to age discrimination under the Equality Act 2010 unless

  • it can it can be objectively justified; or
  • the employer can establish that being below that age is an “occupational requirement”.

Saga’s director of communications, Paul Green, commented that the change to the law means that “many more older people are able to continue in work for as long as they choose to do so, rather than at the whim of their employer”.

However, he warned that the news masked a rising problem amongst the over-50s of long-term unemployment and called on the government to make changes to incentivise employers to recruit older workers.

Mr Green also appealed to employers to: “stop writing older workers off simply because they have found themselves out of work at an older age, and start making the most of the invaluable skills and experience many have to offer.”


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