Webb: Businesses must see the potential of older workers

June 13, 2014 2:47 PM
Originally published by UK Liberal Democrats

At the launch of a new action plan today, Liberal Democrat Pensions Minister Steve Webb stressed that British businesses must realise the potential of older workers and help people to stay in the workplace.

Supporting older people in employment is part of new measures set out by Liberal Democrats in Government to strengthen the economy whilst ensuring fairness in the workplace.

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Findings in the plan reveal that the UK economy could have been boosted by £18bn in 2013 if the employment gap between people in their 40s and those aged 50 to State Pension Age was halved.

It also outlines new measures to encourage employers to consider the benefits of older workers in businesses.

Steve Webb said:

"Older workers have a huge amount to bring to any workforce and are a vast untapped talent.

"We are living longer and can expect many more years of healthy life. It's great news but it's something that as a society and as an economy we need to respond to.

"The business case is compelling and the research we are launching today sets out clearly the advantages for individuals, employers and the state.

"As part of building a fairer society, I am determined that we boost our support for older workers and help employers challenge outdated perceptions to see the real strengths of this important section of the workforce."

Today's announcement builds on previous measures that the Liberal Democrats have been working on to tackle age discrimination in the workplace, including making it illegal to sack a person just for turning 65.