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Published on 29 July 2010 10:00 AM

Age NI welcomes Government plans to scrap default retirement age

Age NI, (the new charity combining Age Concern NI and Help the Aged in Northern Ireland) welcomes plans by the Government to scrap the default retirement age in 2011.  

Anne O’Reilly, Chief Executive at Age NI said: ‘Policies like the default retirement age have always presented a barrier to the full and equal participation of older people in Northern Ireland.  We warmly welcome Government plans to eradicate this barrier.   At present, almost one quarter of the working population in Northern Ireland is over 50.  It stands to reason that we should fully utilise our highly skilled and experienced resource of older workers, not let it go.’

‘Ageing is a global phenomenon and by 2029 the number of over 60s in Northern Ireland will increase to 600,000. We believe that our ageing society is a demographic bounty that offers exciting opportunities.  Older people already make a huge contribution to society as carers, volunteers and workers.  Research demonstrates lower rates of absenteeism among older workers, and by eradicating the default retirement age we have an opportunity to maximise the skills and knowledge acquired by older workers. By removing the default retirement age, we can ensure that older people have the right to pursue available opportunities that enable them to contribute fully to our social and economic life.’

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Notes to editors

1 Visit to find out more about Age NI

For more information: Call Age NI Advice: 0808 808 7575