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Age Discrimination at Interview - Help

(7 Posts)
ruralretreat Wed 26-Oct-16 16:20:19

Went for an interview today, the first question I was asked was my date of birth! Sadly I couldn't be mistaken for under 18. The position was for a marketing role. I have asked the company why they asked for my age, but they have refused to say, but have been very quick to say that they are an equal opportunities company and don't discriminate.

2ndSopranos Wed 26-Oct-16 17:38:13

That's not age discrimination, or at least I don't think it is.

Age discrimination might be where it's pointed out to you during an interview that you look younger than you are and how do you think you can do your job effectively as a result. <bitter 16 years on>

Or when you respond to an advert in a window for a sales assistant over the age of 18. You're 18 and actually have two forms of Id with you, but because you don't look over 18 you're thrown out without even being allowed to show your id.

ICancelledTheCheque Wed 26-Oct-16 19:57:14

It would only be age discrimination if you weren't offered an interview based solely on your age. But even if that happened, you'd struggle to prove it.

Plus, they can guess your age from your CV anyway...

ilovesooty Wed 26-Oct-16 22:08:24

I can't imagine why you should have been asked that at interview.

BestIsWest Wed 26-Oct-16 22:19:56

Pretty sure it's an illegal question.

HandbagFan Thu 27-Oct-16 08:39:14

I work in HR.

The question itself is not illegal, or discriminatory. It's what they do with that information that's risky. It's fine for them to ask for information such as your name, address, DOB. But if they've collected that information before making a selection decision then they run the risk of a claim of discrimination if the candidate isn't then picked.

They can legally turn you down for many reasons - lack of relevant experience, poor answers to questions posed, even the colour of your shoes. But because they asked your DOB like they did the risk is you would claim it was based on your age and they would have to evidence that the decision was because your shoes were brown.

Dodgy ground for them but nothing illegal in the question itself. I'd be giving them a good talking to in my organisation though!

ruralretreat Thu 27-Oct-16 09:47:36

Thanks for your comments on this. I was surprised to have been asked, as my understanding is that under the Equalities Act 2010, it is illegal to ask age unless it is pertinent to the job, e.g being 18 to sell alcohol, in the same way you cannot ask if someone is planning to have children. Handbag, I agree certainly if I was recruiting I would not ask those questions, even if the information was not going to be used in a discriminatory way. Does seem very strange that it's the first question they ask. Will just have to put it down to interview experience.....

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