Breaking down the barriers

How do you break down the barriers to workforce participation faced by mature age people? What are the barriers that stand in the way? What can law and legal frameworks do about it? These were the key challenges for the ALRC in this Inquiry.

Law reform can remove barriers to mature age workforce participation by removing specific age limits, and by making discrimination on the basis of age unlawful. But law can only go so far. Achieving cultural change was singled out by stakeholders in the Inquiry as crucial for reform. It is ‘the real game changer’.[5] Law reform has its part in contributing to cultural change and can lead it in some respects.

What the ALRC contributes in this Inquiry is a range of 36 targeted recommendations that capture some of the momentum for reform, complementing other work in the broader area of policy development affecting mature age people. The ALRC also gives voice to wider concerns where those have been highlighted throughout the Inquiry.

[5] National Welfare Rights Network (NWRN), Submission 99.