Working past 65 in the UK and USA: segregation into ‘Lopaq’ occupations?
LAIN, DAVID (2012) Working past 65 in the UK and USA: segregation into ‘Lopaq’ occupations? Work, Employment and Society, 26 (1). pp. 78-94. ISSN 0950-0170
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Official URL: http://wes.sagepub.com/content/26/1/78
A prominent business case for employing older people in the 2000s suggests diverse employment opportunities existed for Britons over 65, despite their limited employment rights. However, it is hypothesized that employees over 65 were disproportionately segregated into less desired ‘Lopaq’ occupations: these were low paid, required few qualifications and were often part-time. The UK is contrasted with the USA, a country with long-established age discrimination legislation; the Labour Force Survey and Current Population Survey are analysed. A greater UK concentration in Lopaq occupations suggests employers, working in a context of limited employee rights, selectively retained and recruited people in their 60s to these jobs. An alternative explanation, that Lopaq employment levels reflected the characteristics of those choosing to work, is unsupported by logistic regression analysis. US evidence suggests that the 2011 default retirement age abolition will weaken UK Lopaq occupational segregation after 65 more than voluntaristic commitments to ‘age-diversity’.
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