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To think this job advert is illegal

(40 Posts)
Topaz25 Tue 22-Sep-15 11:18:28

I saw this on my local gumtree:

"Looking for a reliable and honest professional domestic house cleaner every fortnightly fridays for 3 hours. General duties such as cleaning, ironing, etc.

Applicants must be aged 30 yrs plus

A schedule will be given and the person must be CRB checked and references A MUST!! "

Isn't it illegal for them to discriminate on the basis of age or is it allowed because they are a private individual hiring rather than a company?

Mrsjayy Tue 22-Sep-15 11:27:31

It sounds iffy the age range but maybe they have had a bad experience and its a private advert you can positively discriminate in job adverts i guess they would need to prove why if challenged

BestZebbie Tue 22-Sep-15 11:42:24

Sounds slightly dubious, but if they put 'needs 15 years experience' instead then they'd be saying exactly the same thing and it would be legal.

sproketmx Tue 22-Sep-15 11:55:49

Depends. It's unlikely but there could be a genuine reason for it. I at the farm when we are looking for machinery operators etc we ad for 25 years or older because we do not have insurance for anyone under that age to use the machinery.

LurkingHusband Tue 22-Sep-15 11:59:14

we do not have insurance for anyone under that age to use the machinery.

So is the insurance company acting legally ?

Mrsjayy Tue 22-Sep-15 12:03:04

Well its driving operating machinery insurance will be skyhigh for under 25s i suspect

sproketmx Tue 22-Sep-15 12:05:13

No it qualifies for exemption because it's dangerous machinery. But for the record insurance companies discriminate all the time. Charging higher premiums to married than single, charging lower premiums to women than men etc

Penfold007 Tue 22-Sep-15 12:07:31

I don't think you can get a DBS check for a domestic cleaner.

EdithWeston Tue 22-Sep-15 12:10:19

You don't need specialist insurance to operate mops, dusters, hoovers, irons etc.

I'm struggling to think of a valid reason to put an age bar on this, or indeed to specify eg 15 years experience, rather than just 'experienced' (I have some faint recollection that it's OK to ask for experience, but to specify more than about 5 years is dodgy, not because it's laid down in those terms, but because of consensus on what is 'reasonable' for most roles).

Mrsjayy Tue 22-Sep-15 12:13:11

Yeah you can friend has a cleaning company has a couple of employees she has 1 you are going into peoples homes so it is a security thing although that advert is for a few hours a fortnight bit of anask to provide their own

LurkingHusband Tue 22-Sep-15 12:14:56

charging lower premiums to women than men

Still ? After the ECJ case ? I got a years overtime out of that smile.

Hornydilemma Tue 22-Sep-15 12:27:15

I think the only difference on insurance since the ECJ is on pension annuity rates. My car insurance definitely went up due to that!

ReallyTired Tue 22-Sep-15 12:34:32

A DBS check is only valid on the day its done. Its no guarentee that the person is honest or not going to abuse someone. Its perfectly legal to have a DBS check done if the cleaner is working for someone vunerable. (Ie. elderly person, disabled person alone with cleaner.) The employer should pay for a DBS check to be done on the sucessful client. (Even if they have had had numerous CRB/ DBS checks before.)

I am not sure whether its legal to discriminate on age.

experiencedhider Tue 22-Sep-15 12:35:51

Even specifying years of experience needed is dubious legally unless you can justify the reason. It would be usually ok to specify e.g 10 years of experience in a highly technical field such as engineering. The job description here would struggle to justify a long period though.

Scremersford Tue 22-Sep-15 12:36:46

Do people really scrutinise gumtree for illegality for working a few hours per week? Anyway, if its in a person's own home, it might fall under what used to be called a "genuine occupational qualification". Its amazing what sort of personal circumstances there might be, but perhaps one of the occupants has an irrational dislike of young people or a medical condition that means they can't cope with them. I'm not good at thinking up examples, maybe someone else can think of one.

I don't really think the age discrimination legislation is that interested in someone advertising for a cleaner in their own home a few hours per week!

experiencedhider Tue 22-Sep-15 12:41:51

Why would it not be interested though? Age discrimination has the same status legally as any other form. Would the fact it's a few hours cleaning make it ok to specify the person had to be of a particular race, or that no gay people could apply?

Toooldtobearsed Tue 22-Sep-15 12:43:51

I really do not know if it is related at all, so feel free to ignore.

A few years ago, I advertised for a pt cleaner and was inundated, and I mean inundated with applications from 16 and 17 year olds.

Apparently they had to apply for a certain number of jobs to be able to claim JSA, so just applied for everything!

I did try to be fair, honestly. I interviewed a few of them, but none were what I was looking for and I eventually employed someone in her 40's.

Age is irrelevant, but for me, experience was not.

CloakAndJagger Tue 22-Sep-15 12:45:43

Yes it's unlawful. You're not allowed to discriminate by age unless it's one of the exemptions.

TheHouseOnTheLane Tue 22-Sep-15 12:46:28

Oh for God's sake OP. It's just a cleaner! For a household...we're not talking about some corporation here.

Littlef00t Tue 22-Sep-15 12:46:53

I did discrimination training at work recently and you can't say and age or x years experience, although I suspect the machinery insurance is an exception. You have to be specific about what experience you're looking for, which might end up meaning the person applying needs x years under their belt.

The advert is definitely illegal if they just have a preference for older cleaners.

VikingVolva Tue 22-Sep-15 12:47:30

And it's unlawful everywhere, not unlawful except on gumtree.

Toooldtobearsed Tue 22-Sep-15 12:47:41

Oh - and I was only advertising 4 hours work a week, but one applicant, who I did interview was an eighteen year old lad who would have had to travel on 3 buses, for over an hour to get to me, but he had to agree to apply for anything within a 90 minutes travel time.

He was lovely, but apart from helping his mam with the shopping, he had no experience.

Sorry, I am derailing here, but always thought that if I had to advertise again, I would as for X number of years experience, just to avoid this.

bruffin Tue 22-Sep-15 12:48:55

I think there is a new service which keeps your dbs updated
I needed a dbs when i worked in finance for a charity, so its just not about working with children/or those that are vulnerable.

Scremersford Tue 22-Sep-15 12:49:44

experiencedhider Why would it not be interested though? Age discrimination has the same status legally as any other form. Would the fact it's a few hours cleaning make it ok to specify the person had to be of a particular race, or that no gay people could apply?

What wouldn't be interested? Do you really think a disappointed teenager is going to go to an employment tribunal and sue for lost expectations or something? How would you enforce this? Its unenforceable, and I think the ET would apply the de minimus rule (too trivial) and a bit of common sense and discretion that it is a few hours per week in someone's own home.

TreadSoftlyOnMyDreams Tue 22-Sep-15 12:57:33

There are different grades of DBS check, the most expensive has checks for people working with vulnerable people. The most basic check your employment history, residency etc, criminal record checks etc. It's all on the website.

Most employers will run a background check of some sort and many will use a vetting company. part of the service is having a DBS check run. You'll only get a personal cert in the post though if you've been cleared to work with vulnerable people.

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