Discrimination comes in many forms but, for those in the workforce, one of the most common acts of discrimination is that which pertains to the age of the employee or applicant.
Thus, the Anti-Age Discrimination in Employment Law was enacted specifically to address this matter.
Sen. Bam Aquino recently called for the strict implementation of the Anti-Age Discrimination in Employment Act to ensure fair treatment and opportunities for everyone.
“Mauuwi lang sa wala ang layunin ng batas na ito kung hindi lang ito maipatutupad nang husto,” said Sen. Bam Aquino, a co-author of the measure in the Senate during the 16th Congress.
“With graduation season coming up, more Filipinos, young and old, will be competing for available jobs. Let’s ensure that there is equal opportunity for all,” added Aquino.
Last week, the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) released the guidelines of this law that mandates equal treatment in the workplace based on age.
Enumerated below are the salient points of the Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) for the Anti-Age Discrimination in Employment Law or RA 10911.
It shall be unlawful for an employer to:
1. Print or publish, or cause to be printed or published, in any form of media, including the internet, any notice of advertisement relating to employment suggesting preferences, limitations, specifications and discrimination based on age
2. Require the declaration of age or birth date during the application process
3. Decline any employment application because of the individual’s age
4. Discriminate against an individual in terms of compensation, terms and conditions or privileges of employment on account of such individual’s age
5. Deny any employee’s or worker’s promotion or opportunity for training because of age
6. Forcibly lay off an employee or worker because of old age, or
7. Impose early retirement on the basis of such employee’s or worker’s age
The IRR qualifies, however, that certain exemptions can be applied if:
1. Age is a bona fide occupational qualification reasonably necessary in the normal operation of a particular business or where the differentiation is based on reasonable factors other than age
2. The intent is to observe the terms of a bona fide seniority system that is not intended to evade the purpose of the rules.
3. The intent is to observe the terms of a bona fide employee retirement or a voluntary early retirement plan consistent with the purpose of thr rules. Provided, that such retirement or voluntary retirement plan is in accordance with the Labor Code
4. The action is duly certified by the Secretary of DOLE after consultation with the stakeholders in accordance with the purpose of (this) rules.
The penalties or punishments for violations could include imprisonment and not just the payment of fines.
Employers beware. Those who violate the law will face fines of not less than P50,000 but not more than P500,000 or imprisonment of not less than 3 months but not more than 2 years, or both.