Over 50’s Finding Themselves Forced From Work
Recent research has shed light on a concerning trend involving over a million individuals aged 50 and above who are being forced out of employment as they retire.
This issue persists despite numerous initiatives put forth by the government to promote the retention or return of these older workers into the labour force in an effort to address critical workforce shortages.
Several factors contribute to this troubling pattern, including being made redundant due to technological advancements or changes in their industry.
The Impact Of Health
Also, health problems make them unable to work at full capacity, and employers pressure them to take early retirement for cost-saving measures or other reasons.
This widespread barrier to maintaining satisfactory employment has significant implications for these older individuals’ personal financial security and mental health, as well as broader societal repercussions on the economy and social welfare systems.
Recognizing the importance of this issue, it is crucial that policymakers and employers alike prioritize comprehensive and effective solutions to better support older workers.
Measure such as securing meaningful employment opportunities and preventing their premature departure from the workforce.
This year, nearly one in ten people aged between 50 and state pension age are involuntarily unemployed, as per a study conducted by the International Longevity Centre think-tank and financial firm Aviva.
The research reveals that around 1.15 million individuals aged between 50 and 64 are affected, up from 1.02 million in 2014. The increase is attributed to the growing older population.
The study suggests that people over 50 face “shocks” – situations beyond their control – which force them out of their jobs due to a lack of support for extended working lives.
The investigation into “involuntarily workless” older individuals is based on data from the Office for National Statistics and is part of a joint effort by the ILC and Aviva addressing necessary changes concerning the aging population.
The report states that demographic shifts will lead to a 2.6 million paid employees shortage by 2030 and almost every economic sector will confront skill deficits.
Regardless of not having mandatory retirement age in the UK, there continues to be a significant exit from employment at state pension age.
Currently, both men and women’s state pension age is set at 66, with plans for another increase to 67 between 2026-2028.
However, the exact timing for raising it further to 68 remains uncertain. Additionally, in 2028, the minimum pension age for accessing workplace and private retirement savings will increase from 55 to 57.
David Sinclair, CEO at International Longevity Centre UK, advocates for making work more appealing and accessible while addressing mental and physical health issues to help people reenter the workforce.
According to Doug Brown, CEO of Aviva UK & Ireland Life, the latest report highlights the need for better strategies in hiring and retaining employees over 50.
A government spokesperson notes the millions invested in employment and skill development for older workers, pointing to recent payroll statistics.
Ultimately, the government encourages employers to adopt more flexible approaches that utilize talent across all age groups.