Worrying new figures from charity group ‘Centre for Ageing Better’ show that almost a third of UK people aged 50-64 are now out of work.
That amounts to over three and a half million people, who often have bags of experience, being kept out of employment even though they frequently want to be back in work.
Across the UK, just over 13 per cent of people aged 35 to 49 are deemed to be ‘economically inactive’ but that rate more than doubles to over 27 per cent for people aged 50 to 64.
Similarly, almost 2 in 5 over 50s who are unemployed have been out of work for over twelve months, again that’s double the percentage of 18 to 24 year olds who have been out of work for more than a year.
The Centre for Ageing Better is now calling on employers and recruiters to help redress the balance in an effort to get hundreds of thousands of these talented under 65s back into the workplace before it’s too late.
Explaining the dilemma for over 50s who still feel they have something to offer in the workplace, the Centre for Ageing Better’s senior programme manager, Jemma Mouland, said:
“Too many older workers are currently being pushed out of the workforce because of poor health, caring responsibilities or redundancy. Once they have lost their job, over 50s struggle much more than any other age group to get back to work, which is costly personally and financially for them, with impacts lasting well into later life. Given that we are all working for longer and our workforce is ageing, we need urgent action to break this vicious cycle.”
“It is not a problem that national government or employment and skills services alone can fix. Poor health and caring responsibilities are some of the most common barriers experienced by older workers, so it is important that health and benefits systems are more joined up and focused on helping those over 50 stay in work, or get back into employment.
“Employers too need to value their older workers more, offer them greater support and flexibility and stamp out ageist employment practices,” concluded Ms Mouland.
As for what measures the Centre for Ageing Better is recommending to employers and recruiters, the charity is asking that decision makers keep a positive attitude and open mind about hiring older workers and translate their skills and experience into vacant jobs even if they might lack formal qualifications.
They also recommend that as many roles as possible offer the sort of flexible hours which might attract the over 50s to send in an application.
If you are in the 50-64 age bracket and are struggling to find work then maybe a part time job could be the perfect flexible route back into the workplace. Even if you are ideally looking to work for 35 or more hours a week, it’s often easier to get back on the career ladder if you start out with fewer hours and try to find full time employment later.
You can find all sorts of different part time jobs all over the United Kingdom right here on this website and many of them are simply perfect for keen talent in the 50-64 age range. Get started now by searching for part time work in your area today – or choose from the job categories at the side of this page.