Solon seeks prohibition against discrimination of older persons during employment

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A House member is seeking to prohibit discrimination against older persons when hiring for employment.

Rep. Eric Olivarez of the 1st of Parañaque City  District  filed House Bill 268 or the proposed “Anti-Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 2013” to prohibit discrimination against any individual with respect to compensation and the terms and conditions of employment on account of age.

The neophyte solon said in the face of rising productivity and affluence, older workers find themselves disadvantaged or discriminated against on their efforts to retain employment or to regain employment when displaced from their jobs.

“The setting of arbitrary age limit regardless of potential for job performance has become a common practice. The incidence of unemployment, especially long-term unemployment with resultant deterioration of skill, morale and employer acceptability, is higher among older workers,” said Olivarez.


House Bill 268 provides it shall be unlawful for an employer to fail or refuse to hire or discharge any individual or otherwise discriminate against such individual with respect to compensation and other terms and conditions of employment by reason or age.

It shall also be unlawful for an employer to limit, segregate or classify employees in any way, which will deprive or tend to deprive an individual of employment opportunity or otherwise adversely affect the status as an employee because of age, or for the employer to reduce the wage rate of any employee by reason of age.

The bill further provides it shall be unlawful for an employment agency to fail or refuse to refer for employment, or otherwise to discriminate against any individual because of age, or to classify or refer for employment any individual on the basis of age.

Likewise, it shall be unlawful for a labor organization to exclude or expel from its membership, or otherwise discriminate against any individual because of age.

It shall also be unlawful for a labor organization to limit, segregate or classify its membership, or fail or refuse to refer for employment any individual in any way which will deprive or tend to deprive such individual of an employment opportunity, or limit such employment opportunity or otherwise adversely affect the status as an employee or as an applicant for employment because of age.

Furthermore, the measure provides it shall be unlawful for an employer, employment agency or a labor organization to print or publish, or cause to be printed or published, any notice or advertisement relating to employment by such an employer; or membership in, or any classification or referral for employment by such an employer; or membership in, or any classification or referral for employment by such a labor organization; or relating to any classification or referral for employment by such an employment agency, indicating any preference, limitation, specification or discrimination based on age.

Exempted from this provision shall be those whose age is a bonafide occupational qualification reasonably necessary to the normal operation of a particular business in the military or any branch of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, or where the differentiation is based on reasonable factors other than age, or where such practices involve an employee in a workplace in a foreign country and compliance will cause such employer, or a corporation controlled by such employer, to violate the laws of the country in which the workplace is located.

Employers with less than 20 employees shall also be exempted from the prohibition, the bill provides.

Any discriminating employer shall be penalized with imprisonment of six months to one year or a fine of P100,000 to P5000,000, or both at the discretion of the court.

Meanwhile, the license of any discriminating agency shall be suspended for one year for the first violation and shall be cancelled for the second violation. Any erring labor organization shall have its registration suspended for one year for the first offense and cancelled for the second offense.

In all cases where the accused is a juridical person, the penalty shall be imposed on the person responsible for the violation. If the accused is an alien, he shall, after service of sentence, be deported immediately without further proceedings in the Bureau of Immigration, the bill provides. PNA

 

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