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Dave Beans

Finished At Fifty

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http://news.bbc.co.uk/panorama/hi/front_page/newsid_9443000/9443259.stm

Panorama, tonight at 8.30

We may not be familiar with the fact that "sick" means cool or that a spot of "chillaxing"' might be a good idea on a Sunday afternoon, but it turns out that we over-50s actually do have a lot in common with Britain's 18-24 year olds - far too many of us are unemployed.

There is currently an army of almost 400,000 over-50s who face a growing stack of rejection letters.

Perhaps more concerning is the fact that almost half are classed by the Office of National Statistics (ONS) as long term unemployed , meaning they have been out of work for at least a year. For the over-50s, the ONS data reveals that the odds of finding another job are lower than in any other age group and they rarely make headlines or are the subject of government back-to-work initiatives.

Put simply, time is not on their side.

Workplace ageism?

During the deep recession of the 1980s, my dad was made redundant from his job in middle management and the memories of his own battle to find work after a lifetime spent providing for his family made this a deeply personal story for me.

“ I hadn't realised how important the status of a job is, how you are identified by the role that you play ”

Lindy Griffiths, 52

I left my own full-time position on the GMTV sofa to embark on new challenges just as I hit 50 - so far, so good - but I know how fortunate I have been.

So is there a growing issue in the British workplace of ageism, are employers turning their backs on older workers? Or are aging workers too unwilling to change with the times?

Ian McCaffery from Salford, who turns 50 this year, told me that losing his job as a banqueting manager after almost 30 years in the hospitality industry has shaken his confidence and hit him harder than he could have imagined.

"When I lost my parents I thought there could have been nothing else worse, but when I lost my job it was like losing my parents, it was actually like losing my family."

He said as the people interviewing him get younger and younger, he feels that his experience, reliability and maturity are not valued and there is a sense that he is not capable of putting in the hard work.

"I still am vibrant, I like to keep going. I can still work 16 hours a day no problem," he said of his energy for hard work.

Andy Harrop, policy director of charity Age UK, said while most employers have realised that they cannot overlook older workers for promotion based on their age without risking consequences, not hiring them in the first place is a different matter.

"There's much more age discrimination in recruitments where employers don't know the potential applicants," he said.

'Relocate, emigrate'

Former trade minister Lord Digby Jones said older workers are at real risk of being forced out of the workforce into an unwelcome - and under-funded - retirement before they are ready after enjoying a bountiful job market throughout their 30s and 40s. He said that while the economy continues to shed jobs at every age and level, he believes many older workers have become set in their ways and that could turn into a barrier to finding employment.

"Have any of them thought of emigrating? What about being mobile within Britain?"

He also said some need to think of retraining and volunteering as a way to keep in the habit of going to work. Perhaps more painfully, he said the idea of accepting substantial pay cuts cannot be ruled out.

After 30 years in management in both the finance and legal sectors, Andrew Macreavy, 57, was made redundant a year ago and despite 490 applications he has only had seven job interviews and has yet to find work. Andrew said while he had considered retraining, he has household bills to pay in the meantime. His small pension pot and his wife's part-time wages mean that the Kent couple do not quality for any state support.

"All that takes time, time needs funding and funds are sadly lacking at the moment."

Time bomb

Age UK's Andy Harrop said the bleak outlook for the public sector in Britain is a time-bomb for the over 50s. While it is expected that 400,000 jobs in the public sector will disappear by 2015, a survey of local councils by Wise Owls, an employment support agency specialising in older workers, found that the over 50s will make up almost 60% of their planned redundancies.

"We could see now a sort of second downturn, which would involve people in their 50s far more than the first banking-led crisis, which perhaps involved younger workers."

Lindy Griffiths, 52, was an early victim of sweeping funding cuts to local councils.

A trained teacher with 22 years experience, Lindy took up a senior position with Rochdale council's schools improvement team. But a loss of funding last year cost Lindy her job and with it, she said, a part of her identity.

"I hadn't realised how important the status of a job is, how you are identified by the role that you play," she said of the shock of being jobless.

Employment minister Chris Grayling said the private sector would lead the recovery in the job market for workers of all ages.

"The evidence is the economy is growing and people will invest and they will create jobs," he said of private enterprise.

The jobless 50-somethings that I have met certainly hope they will be given the chance to participate in that growing economy. If they are not, they and the thousands more expected to join their ranks in the coming months risk becoming Britain's latest lost generation.

Will ageism ever be eradicated? Probably not entirely, but I think a lot will change in the next 10 to 20 years..

Edited by Dave Beans

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Will ageism ever be eradicated? Probably not entirely, but I think a lot will change in the next 10 to 20 years..

...sure will.....at least 50+ women are past the child bearing age. ;)

edit to add, older people should be able to live on less, so can earn less, if they plan for it and things fall into place in their favour........some 50+ people are far too expensive for their own good.

Edited by winkie

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http://news.bbc.co.uk/panorama/hi/front_page/newsid_9443000/9443259.stm

Panorama, tonight at 8.30

Will ageism ever be eradicated? Probably not entirely, but I think a lot will change in the next 10 to 20 years..

There is a lot of talk about people working longer, getting long term unemployed and long term incapacity claimants back to work but there is one problem, THERE are not enough jobs for this large number of people to fill.

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There is a lot of talk about people working longer, getting long term unemployed and long term incapacity claimants back to work but there is one problem, THERE are not enough jobs for this large number of people to fill.

...low paid jobs will have to be 'created' if they want 100% employment.....one big hurdle to jump will be even if they create the 'non jobs' to fill the hole, how will people get to them when transport costs are so prohibitive and scarce in many areas.........moving areas when on low pay is out of the question for most, unless you are given an expenses account. ;)

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They always seem to present the problem in isolation as if the 3 million immigrants over a wide range of skills and professions and all the offshoring is a separate problem. It'll be interesting whether it rates much of a mention by Panorama or whether it'll be biased towards "all these 50s people claiming the dole".

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I thought this was a thread about celebrating those among us who at the age of 50 have finished clearing all their debts and have effectively, if not actually retired from the debt-slavery.

/is on target to be all finished up in 12 years time... 48 years old :D

Of course I may still end up paying for the kids to go the further education :S

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They always seem to present the problem in isolation as if the 3 million immigrants over a wide range of skills and professions and all the offshoring is a separate problem. It'll be interesting whether it rates much of a mention by Panorama or whether it'll be biased towards "all these 50s people claiming the dole" and "so unwilling to change" garbage..

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Former trade minister Lord Digby Jones said older workers are at real risk of being forced out of the workforce into an unwelcome - and under-funded - retirement before they are ready after enjoying a bountiful job market throughout their 30s and 40s. He said that while the economy continues to shed jobs at every age and level, he believes many older workers have become set in their ways and that could turn into a barrier to finding employment.

That's rich coming from him with him looking like he's set in the ways of stepping up to the plate - the dining free plate.

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They always seem to present the problem in isolation as if the 3 million immigrants over a wide range of skills and professions and all the offshoring is a separate problem. It'll be interesting whether it rates much of a mention by Panorama or whether it'll be biased towards "all these 50s people claiming the dole".

I'm probably generalising, but aren't immigrants largely performing those jobs that UK nationals don't want to do? and I'm sure many of those in their 50's who are put "on the scrapheap" are the middle managers of this world?

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http://news.bbc.co.uk/panorama/hi/front_page/newsid_9443000/9443259.stm

Panorama, tonight at 8.30

Will ageism ever be eradicated? Probably not entirely, but I think a lot will change in the next 10 to 20 years..

What a load of crap. Did the producers even bother to read our unemployment data?

From the ONS bulletin for March

"The number of people in employment

aged 65 and over increased by 56,000 on the quarter to reach 900,000, the highest figure since

comparable records began in 1992. The number of people in employment aged between 50 and 64

increased by 25,000 on the quarter to reach 7.32 million, the highest figure since comparable records

began in 1992."

Things have never been better for those over 50 seeking a job.

If anything the program should address how those under 25 face a bleak future as the older generation take all the jobs.

Employers seem to be increasing going for mature older workers over there x factor brainwashed compatriots. Who can blame them?

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We have had, until the late 2000s, maybe 25 years of positive job creation in this country, there was bound to be an amount of slack, of basically redundant positions, often pretty well paid, in both private and public sector, owing to the principle of empire building

we were due a shakeout, and it is mathematically inevitable, after a 25 year build up period, that the people shook out near the top of the non job pyramid will be from the age of 45 upwards; by definition, somebody aged 35 would not have been able to climb a non job ladder so far, and also by definition, they are young enough to retrai. the 45+ year olds in this very lucky age group should have their financial positions all sorted by now, and if not, if they have been in one of these golden positions, then tough.

Edited by Si1

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There is a lot of talk about people working longer, getting long term unemployed and long term incapacity claimants back to work but there is one problem, THERE are not enough jobs for this large number of people to fill.

oh there are, saw a nice 60 year old, had a nice chat, shelving at sainsburys yesterday

it's just that if the said 50-somethings NEED a £37k+ salary to maintain their former non-job standard of living, then they're royally f00ked

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We have had, until the late 2000s, maybe 25 years of positive job creation in this country, there was bound to be an amount of slack, of basically redundant positions, often pretty well paid, in both private and public sector, owing to the principle of empire building

we were due a shakeout, and it is mathematically inevitable, after a 25 year build up period, that the people shook out near the top of the non job pyramid will be from the age of 45 upwards; by definition, somebody aged 35 would not have been able to climb a non job ladder so far, and also by definition, they are young enough to retrai. the 45+ year olds in this very lucky age group should have their financial positions all sorted by now, and if not, if they have been in one of these golden positions, then tough.

Although every does seem to think most boomers are raking it in...not all are...Many I suspect were doing well, but due to one reason or another, aren't (divorce can be a major reason)..and some will be in poverty (if not extreme poverty) when they are elderly...just like their kids :( ....My mum works with a professional ex footballer...He's now broke because he sold the family house and gave the money to his kids, who now don't want to really know him..

Can a person in their 50's just emigrate elsewhere (outside Europe) and expect to get a job? I thought Australia had a maximum age range (45?)...

Would anyone here hire a "more mature" person rather than a youngster for the same job?

Edited by Dave Beans

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Would anyone here hire a "more mature" person rather than a youngster for the same job?

it depends on their skills

a 50 year old financial adviser, engineer, accountant, programmer, scientist - yes, these have some kind of barrier to entry to the field, they may njot pay loads, but only certain people can do them

a 50 year old local council middle manager, private sector HR consultant, recruitment consultant, teaching supervisor/co-ordinator, diversity manager, whatever - doubt it - these are empire-building jobs, with low intellectual barriers to entry, easily replaceable with whipper-snappers who will brown-tongue the appropriate ar5e with greater vigour to get the job

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Would anyone here hire a "more mature" person rather than a youngster for the same job?

...depends on the person....depends on the job....depends on the price. ;)

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It wouldn't be a total surprise to find out that even if there are jobs that UK people really want to do much of the UK population lack the actual skills to do them now so much has been offshored and sold off to say the east europeans.

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I'm forty next year and there is no way, as things stand, I'll be able to retire before I'm in my mid-sixties. As an IT worker in the Manufacturing industry I'm desperately trying to think of an exit strategy before its too late!

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On Saturday I was down at Dover Western Dock transshipping a load off a Lithuanian truck which had been given a prohibition notice by VOSA for defective brakes and an insecure wheel (two wheel nuts missing, elongated stud holes on the other studs and part of the wheel missing).

He was taking the load from Venlo, NL, to Spalding. Ten years ago this would have been done by a Dutch or British driver, now the Lithuanian will do it for a third of the wages. He told me he spent a month or so at a time running loads round western Europe in between getting home.

Later in the day at Dover truckstop I saw around two dozen Norbert Dentressangle trucks parked up, all re-registered in Poland and Romania, no doubt the French drivers who once drove them are now also on the dole.

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...depends on the person....depends on the job....depends on the price. ;)

As a fifty something manager I hire people because they know more than me or have the potential to learn more than me. Members of my team are even paid more than me as a result. Age doesn't come into it.

I know some 50+ year olds have an inflated idea of their worth. I know some who would like to retire but are too valuable to the company to let go. I know some who are a waste of space - these don't work for me.

The public sector can borrow money some 6% cheaper than the private sector, so they can 'afford' to utterly be PC about employment and not challenge the parasites that infest them via the sick note brigade. My brother works in the public sector and can't believe I have a policy that says anyone coming in to work when they know they are sick is risking a disciplinary - my folks, young and old, would rather die at their desk than swing the lead. His on the other hand think that taking sick leave for years on end is a god-given right. Its a bit like the print unions before Wapping. As a teenager I witnessed members of the print union clocking in and out with two clock cards apiece completely unchallenged by the management. Workplace morality is a financial issue and much more serious one than someone's age.

If you are a graduate under 54 you can always emigrate to New Zealand - but that requires some get up and go.

Don't wait to get old, start learning another trade so that you have a second string to your bow. That way you have a choice and can move on at a time of your choosing.

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Former trade minister Lord Digby Jones said older workers are at real risk of being forced out of the workforce into an unwelcome - and under-funded - retirement before they are ready after enjoying a bountiful job market throughout their 30s and 40s. He said that while the economy continues to shed jobs at every age and level, he believes many older workers have become set in their ways and that could turn into a barrier to finding employment.

"Have any of them thought of emigrating? What about being mobile within Britain?"

Can a person in their 50's just emigrate elsewhere (outside Europe) and expect to get a job? I thought Australia had a maximum age range (45?)...

You've hit the nail on the head. You need a serious amount of cash to be able to emigrate to Australia or New Zealand (I believe) if your older than fifty. Just looked on a website showing a points table for emigration to NZ. The points for your age range from 30 age 20-29 to 5 age 50-55. Quite a handicap to overcome when you're over 50.

Does Lord Digby Jones know what the real world is like?

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******ing hell - has the producer given this presenter bird a directive to get some tears at any cost ?!

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I'm probably generalising, but aren't immigrants largely performing those jobs that UK nationals don't want to do? and I'm sure many of those in their 50's who are put "on the scrapheap" are the middle managers of this world?

The jobs don't get offered to UK nationals, and British nationals wouldn't get to the interview stage if they were.

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  • 312 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
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      • Even
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      • up 5%



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