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house Bill H.R. 1230

Should Anti-Discrimination Protections for Older Workers Be Strengthened?

Argument in favor

This bill would ease the standard of proof older workers face when claiming age-related employment discrimination and retaliation by removing the requirement that they show their employer’s action was based solely on age.

jimK's Opinion
···
01/14/2020
Per burrKitty’s comment, which I agree with, I am responding to the question posed and not addressing any specific legislation. … … …Discrimination is wrong. Period. Discrimination is wrong if it is based on race, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, county of origin, age or any reason not pertinent to the duties required to be performed. As much as I would like to be a pro baseball player, I do not have nor ever did have the requisite skills. As much as I would like to be a forest ranger, my personal age related physical shortcomings mean I no longer have the physical ability's required. That is fair. However, I have other things that I can do, some of which I think I can do fairly well. My age, the numerical number of it, is not the factor - it is my ability to perform prescribed duties as well as anyone else, and that should be the only factor that counts. Employers do discriminate and it is very difficult for older people to get work; most employers are not dumb enough to state that age was a factor in their no-go decision and will find some other lame excuse. While true, it does not excuse their discriminatory mindset.
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Kim's Opinion
···
01/14/2020
Yes, people over 50 have a lot to offer and there is to much ageism. Just like discrimination against women,there are lots of ways older adults are discriminated against that are not adequately covered by current laws
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verymary's Opinion
···
01/14/2020
Older workers often feel like prey, with all the giant predatory birds circling precariously overhead. There is an assumption in America that everyone can afford to retire or wants to retire, so older folks should just run along and make way for the next generation. But let's not toss out the old or the young. Every generation has something valuable to offer.
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Argument opposed

While this bill may make it easier for older workers to prove that they faced age-related discrimination in the workplace, the fact that it precludes the courts from awarding them anything beyond legal fees means it will primarily benefit trial lawyers.

burrkitty's Opinion
···
01/14/2020
Read the bill. It’s just money for lawyers. Useless bill is useless. It doesn’t actually help.
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NoHedges's Opinion
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01/15/2020
I would honestly prefer to see social security overhauled so older generations can afford to retire and still maintain a strong quality of life. Multi-Millionaires and billionaires do not need to be drawing a social security check every month regardless of what they did/did not pay in. We all pay taxes for social welfare safety nets that we pray we will never need. Social security needs income/wealth caps and monthly payments need to be tripled. Our older generations deserve the time and finances to enjoy their retirement years while mentoring future generations. This type of cross generational weaving is crucial.
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B.R.'s Opinion
···
01/14/2020
While all working personnel, including the elderly, should be protected from discrimination, it does not appear that this bill addresses the issue; bill appears to be misleading. Prior to approval, questions need to be answered.
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bill Progress


  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The senate has not voted
  • The house Passed January 15th, 2020
    Roll Call Vote 261 Yea / 155 Nay
    IntroducedFebruary 14th, 2019

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What is House Bill H.R. 1230?

This bill — the Protecting Older Workers Against Discrimination Act — would clarify that considering age in any employment practice is prohibited, even if factors other than age motivated the practice in part. To establish that an unlawful employment practice occurred, a complaining party could rely on any type or form of admissible evidence that’s sufficient for a reasonable trier of fact to find that an unlawful practice occurred. The complaining party wouldn’t be required to demonstrate that age or a protected activity was the sole cause of a practice as required by a Supreme Court ruling in Gross v. FBL Financial Service, Inc. (2009).

For a claim in which an individual demonstrates that age was a motivating factor for an employment practice and the respondent demonstrates that they would’ve taken the same action absent the impermissible motivating factor, the court:

  • Could grant declaratory relief, injunctive relief, and attorney’s fees or costs that are directly attributable to a claim.

  • Could not award damages or issue an order requiring any admission, reinstatement, hiring, or payment.

Impact

Older workers who face discrimination; employers who undertake prohibited employment actions; and courts.

Cost of House Bill H.R. 1230

The CBO estimates that enacting this bill would require the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) to hire about 20 new employees to handle the additional workload at a cost of about $2 million annually over the 2020-2024 period.

More Information

In-Depth: House Education & Labor Committee Chairman Bobby Scott (D-VA) introduced this bill to strengthen anti-discrimination protections for older workers:

“Discrimination shuts too many people out of good paying jobs. All Americans -- regardless of their age -- should be able to go to work every day knowing that they are protected from discrimination. The Protecting Older Workers Against Discrimination Act would ensure there are no additional barriers for older Americans when making a discrimination claim compared to any other protected class. This legislation is a step toward restoring the rights of older workers.”

Original cosponsor Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner (R-WI) added:

“Older Americans should be valued because of their experiences, not viewed as a liability due to their age. This bipartisan legislation will restore fairness in the workplace for our more seasoned workers, providing them the peace of mind that they will not be unfairly fired from their job because of age discrimination.”

The House version of this bill passed the Education & Workforce Committee on a 27-18 vote that was mostly along party-lines. Ranking Member Virginia Foxx (R-NC) explained the opposition by most GOP members in this bill’s committee report:

“H.R. 1230 is an unnecessary and misleading bill that does not “protect older workers.” Committee Democrats failed to allow a proper examination of H.R. 1230, depriving Members of the opportunity to review the legislation appropriately before it was considered by the Committee. Supporters of the bill also failed to demonstrate that the legislation is needed, or that it will actually help workers. H.R. 1230 was instead written for the benefit of trial lawyers, ensuring they will be paid, while most workers will not receive any monetary damages, other payments, or reinstatement.”

This legislation has the support of 91 cosponsors, including 80 Democrats and 11 Republicans, and the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) has expressed support for the bill. A companion bill in the Senate that was introduced with similar bipartisan support from Sens. Bob Casey (D-PA) and Susan Collins (R-ME) — the ranking member and chairwoman of the Special Committee on Aging — plus Sens. Chuck Grassley (R-IA), and Patrick Leahy (D-VT).


Media:

Summary by Eric Revell

(Photo Credit: iStock.com / MangoStar_Studio)

AKA

Protecting Older Workers Against Discrimination Act

Official Title

Protecting Older Workers Against Discrimination Act

    Per burrKitty’s comment, which I agree with, I am responding to the question posed and not addressing any specific legislation. … … …Discrimination is wrong. Period. Discrimination is wrong if it is based on race, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, county of origin, age or any reason not pertinent to the duties required to be performed. As much as I would like to be a pro baseball player, I do not have nor ever did have the requisite skills. As much as I would like to be a forest ranger, my personal age related physical shortcomings mean I no longer have the physical ability's required. That is fair. However, I have other things that I can do, some of which I think I can do fairly well. My age, the numerical number of it, is not the factor - it is my ability to perform prescribed duties as well as anyone else, and that should be the only factor that counts. Employers do discriminate and it is very difficult for older people to get work; most employers are not dumb enough to state that age was a factor in their no-go decision and will find some other lame excuse. While true, it does not excuse their discriminatory mindset.
    Like (135)
    Follow
    Share
    Read the bill. It’s just money for lawyers. Useless bill is useless. It doesn’t actually help.
    Like (30)
    Follow
    Share
    Yes, people over 50 have a lot to offer and there is to much ageism. Just like discrimination against women,there are lots of ways older adults are discriminated against that are not adequately covered by current laws
    Like (42)
    Follow
    Share
    Older workers often feel like prey, with all the giant predatory birds circling precariously overhead. There is an assumption in America that everyone can afford to retire or wants to retire, so older folks should just run along and make way for the next generation. But let's not toss out the old or the young. Every generation has something valuable to offer.
    Like (40)
    Follow
    Share
    Absolutely. Worst discrimination I’ve experienced is age discrimination.
    Like (32)
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    I would honestly prefer to see social security overhauled so older generations can afford to retire and still maintain a strong quality of life. Multi-Millionaires and billionaires do not need to be drawing a social security check every month regardless of what they did/did not pay in. We all pay taxes for social welfare safety nets that we pray we will never need. Social security needs income/wealth caps and monthly payments need to be tripled. Our older generations deserve the time and finances to enjoy their retirement years while mentoring future generations. This type of cross generational weaving is crucial.
    Like (29)
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    Share
    Less and less individuals have retirement plans as they can barely manage even in their current financial situation, we’re likely to have many more “older” workers in the work force. There’s need to be something to protect them.
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    Yes. But why have we not protected other segments of our society equally? The last three years have seen prejudice and discrimination grow not decrease. All from the extreme right. That growth has been led by the President, the Republican Party, and their supporters including evangelists. A large majority of these supporters are white and over 50. Laws against discrimination should be strengthened at all levels including those pertaining to individuals that discriminate. Either we address all forms of discrimination or we address none.
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    Age discrimination is alive and well, and way too easy for employers.
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    Both the older worker & the government bears the costs of discrimination against older workers! Social Security has incentives to wait to collect till age 70 instead of the earliest age of 62. Employers are getting rid of workers in their 50s & 60s but it’s hard to prove because the usually go through a restructuring where jobs are eliminate or sometimes just renamed but the only openings are for entry level workers who are younger & cheaper. Those workers have few options especially when all the jobs not only in their organization but others as well are the same entry level positions where they won’t even consider an older, experienced worker Most will file for unemployment immediately & then the wait to claim Social Security early at 62, or even earlier by claiming disability, and then waiting for Medicare at age 65.
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    Yes, discrimination can not be tolerated anywhere- Period. Aging is not a disease as there is richness in hiring through out the age continuum. If that were the case, many in Congress should step aside after 2 terms.
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    Discrimination is against the law, regardless if it’s about age, gender, skin color, or religion. It’s wrong, and employers practicing it should be punished. People need to work longer than they ever have in this country because of low wages and poor health care. No good worker should be penalized for it over something that is already supposed to be illegal.
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    While all working personnel, including the elderly, should be protected from discrimination, it does not appear that this bill addresses the issue; bill appears to be misleading. Prior to approval, questions need to be answered.
    Like (13)
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    Yes by all means and I believe and I thought they were protected under disabilities act as well as race gender but obviously Republicans are changing the Factive such and they’re not making it a priority to protect house and persons for homes that are being priced out of their homes because of this age discrimination race discrimination sexual orientation why is this happening Congress senators must protect at all cost federal that’s why there’s a greater and a highest homeless crisis in modern history.
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    “All men are created equal.” These monumental words have influenced the decisions of America since its inception. Let us allow these words to affect us now and keep equality a focal point in every business of America
    Like (11)
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    Yes, protections for older workers must be strengthened.
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    Older people have a tough time finding work if laid off, or fired. Re-entering the workplace needs to be easier. Most oldsters can't retire because Social Security is all they have and that's not enough to live on.
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    Many employers don’t want to even hire a new potential employee that’s near 50. Age discrimination isn’t usually something most people even think about until they are about 50 yrs old. I think anyone that’s willing and able to work should be able to. Older employees have much to offer and should be given equal opportunities to show that.
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    Do this because it’s the right thing to do simple as that!
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    All discrimination is bad
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