Retirement age fix gets mixed response

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Ministers will allow employers to set a retirement age at 65 while allowing employees the right to request to work beyond this age; the news has received a mixed response.

Employers' group the CBI has called the decision ‘sensible and pragmatic’ while the Employers Forum On Age (EFA) has lashed out at the government calling it a ‘fudge’.

John Cridland, CBI Deputy Director-General commented: "It means people can ask to work beyond 65 and they will be able to do so unless there is a good business reason why not. This will be a big change from the status quo because contractual retirment ages below 65 will now have to go.

"But it also means there is a clear cut-off point to employment, which is important if you don't want to embitter the retirement process and trigger an explosion of tribunal claims. Neither employers or employees want people to work forever."

Meanwhile the EFA has said the government’s announcement that it will review the age 65 default retirement age in five years time is a failure to make a decision.

The EFA believe that a fixed retirement age is not the right path for the UK in the future.

Sam Mercer, director of the EFA said:

“Employers need clarity. Simply postponing the decision leaves everyone in the dark. After five years of debate we are no further forward and the same arguments will be made in five years time.”


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16th Dec 2004 17:28

I have recently been advised that women are still entitled to retire at the age of 60 until around 2010 is this not the case? If not can you reference the appropriate legislation?

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16th Dec 2004 17:29

It is often said that "prople want change, but they dont want to change"

if we do not keep an retirement age celing, the consequences will be had for the organization.
E.g many of the people who have crossed the age of 65, are less likely to work effectively and efficiently unlike that of people who are young.

also, if the retirement age is not fixed, it will be challenging to bring in any changes required in the conduct of business.

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17th Dec 2004 02:46

Most technical and managerial people acquire high skill levels over many years-up to 20+ years for some people. To lose this without back-up undermines the human capital potential of an arganisation. Younger people may have more energy, sometimes, but also show less dedication to the organisation, higher absentism and more likely to move jobs.
All employees should be effective and productive and mature age does not indicate that they are less so. Over the last 25 years I have lived and worked in 20 different countries:a new job and way of life each time. Very few people of any age can handle that and be effective in their work.Most people just starting out on this expat life find it very difficult at first and most give up early.In my field mature age is considered a positive advantage as it is recognised that you have "been through the mill" and can handle most new situations and have the experience to adapt to what the reality determines and not try to impose an idealogy youth often imposes through lacking professional experience.

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22nd Dec 2004 13:55

I really cannot understand this (and previous) govenment's appearent reluctance to introduce effective age discrimination. It has put off legislation as long as it can (until 2006) under EEC rules and now is trying to water this down. There seems to be a desire to protect every sort of minority group (and foxes) but not to legislate for something that affects us all eventually.

On the one hand the gov. is trying to get us to draw our pensions later and, on the other, it is allowing a forced retirement age of 65 - where is the logic and joined-up-govenment that we were promised?

Why, and on what evidence, is it assumed that
older people lack energy or ability or are incapable of change (see earlier comments)? Would it be acceptable to express such views about any other sector of society?

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