The age of no ageism

Legal eagle: Douglas Johnson is available to give advice on age discrimination law.
Legal eagle: Douglas Johnson is available to give advice on age discrimination law.
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AGE discrimination at work has been against the law since 2006 – but as of Monday it’s banned everywhere else.

Now it’s unlawful to stop older people trying to enter a nightclub or join a gym due to their age.

In one case considered by the Government, an 84-year-old man was told he’d been put at the bottom of a six-month waiting list – and any cancellations would go to a young person.

It could even apply if staff in a trendy fashion store said, ‘there’s nothing in here for you’ to an older customer.

The 2010 Equality Act makes it unlawful for any organisation providing a private or public service to discriminate against, harass or victimise anyone due to their age.

Douglas Johnson, of Sheffield Law Centre, said: “Ageism is now outlawed and employers should train staff to avoid such comments.

“There’s a big difference between having a laugh and harassment, which is unwanted.

“Society is saying ageism is not right – just as racism is no longer acceptable – and now there are things people can do to take action.”

There are a number of exceptions – it will still be legal to have Saga holidays, concessions for pensioners and students, under-9s football and a ban on selling glue and knives to children. Most age-based financial products are also unaffected.

Douglas is available to give advice – ring on 0114 2731888 or email douglas.johnson@slc.org.uk.