Age Discrimination in Employment
AbstractThe Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) was passed by Congress in 1967 to prohibit arbitrary discrimination in the workplace on the basis of age. The present interest in age discrimination can only increase, because people over 65 are expected to comprise more than 18% of the population by 2025. Social scientists must understand the subtleties posed by the age variable. Older workers tend to be replaced by younger ones even in a nondiscriminatory setting. In addition, at any particular job level, employees with more potential will tend to be younger and the employees with less potential will tend to be older. Analysts must separate the effects of legitimate qualifications from the effects of illegal age discrimination. This article provides an interdisciplinary review of the ADEA, including what it is and how social science statistical methods may be applied to analyze age-discrimination data.