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Outlook grim for unemployed older workers

Outlook grim for unemployed older workers
50 workers continue to struggle
Despite a fall in the number of unemployed people in the last quarter, TAEN The Age and Employment Network warned today that the long term unemployment and economic inactivity rates remain unacceptably high for the over-50s.
While 38,000 more people in the 50-64 age range, and 44,000 over-65s, found jobs between June and August 2010, the number of over-50s out of work for 12 months or more remained the highest for any age group at 165,000, despite a drop of 6,000.
The number of people between 50 and 64 classified as economically inactive has grown by 48,000 in the past year, with 3,750,000 people in this age group outside the labour market altogether.
The bulk of this rise has been among men over the age of 50, with 1,335,000 now economically inactive, 48,000 more than this time last year. 
Chris Ball, Chief Executive of TAEN, said:
These are some very worrying signs for unemployed older people and those about to lose their jobs. We fear that worse is to come.
Long term unemployment or economic inactivity is a very difficult position to be in when you are in or approaching your 50s. These are the workers being told that they must work longer and save more for their retirement, but at the same time they are being shut out of the labour market, making it all the harder to get back in.
We are particularly concerned about the rates for older men as we know from previous recessions that many who faced unemployment at their age never got back to work. Far from saving for a longer retirement, it seems that many may have already retired involuntarily.
This reinforces the need for dedicated support for older workers, making sure that they are referred to careers services quickly and receive tailored support in terms of training and career development.
With startling predictions that next weeks Spending Review (Wednesday 20 October) could see one million jobs lost as public spending cuts take hold, we fear that more difficulty and uncertainty lies ahead for older workers.


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