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Protected characteristics: age

Ian Peate - Professor of Nursing and Editor in Chief of British Journal of Nursing (BJN) First published:

This refers to a person belonging to a particular age or age range; it is unlawful for an employer to discriminate against a worker because of their age. Direct and indirect discrimination can arise in a number of circumstances, including:

  • how an employer hires new staff; for example, the employer cannot state in a job advertisement that the post must be filled by a person of a particular age
  • refusing to offer or purposely not offering a person employment on the grounds of age
  • changing the terms offered to a person in employment on the grounds of their age
  • not giving a promotion, transfer, training or any other benefit on the grounds of the person’s age
  • dismissing an employee or subjecting them to any other disadvantage on the grounds of their age (Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service, 2019)

Employers should take care in making judgements about someone’s ability to do

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Ian Peate

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