More older workers, but pressure rises on benefits system

Efforts to encourage more older people to stay on at work are putting extra pressure on the social security system because many of them end up claiming incapacity benefit, according to a new report.

In 2010, 49% of the over-55s were still working, compared with just one third ten years ago. The rise is due to an increase in women working and efforts to discourage early retirement, the report for the UWV benefit agency shows.
However, around half of the people claiming incapacity benefits are aged over 55, as are 40% of long-term unemployment benefit claimants. Once they are in the benefit system, older workers find it more difficult to rejoin the employment market, the report states.
Negative image

‘Employers are still influenced by negative images about the skills and productivity of older workers,’ the UWV says. ‘Older people are less likely to be invited to an interview than a young person.’
Just 2% of job vacancies are filled by the over 55s.
Research by employment website, also out on Tuesday, shows that many people think the over 50s should be able to fudge their cvs in order to get a job. Almost half think the over 50s should be able to leave their age off a cv.

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