It has long been acknowledged that words, contrary to the well-known children’s rhyme, can hurt. The U.S. Supreme Court is now considering whether a term introduced by younger people and aimed at the baby boomer generation can be considered as age employment discrimination in the workplace in Florida and around the country. The term is “OK boomer.”
In a world that is changing so rapidly it may not be difficult to understand how a younger person might become frustrated by hearing that there might be benefits to how something might have been done in “the old days.” The age discrimination law that was passed in 1967 was enacted in part to protect older employees from this kind of discrimination. It took time to acknowledge that there was value to having the perspectives of both men and women in the work environment. It is time to acknowledge that older employees can have a positive impact as a result of their age and experience, not in spite of it.
It may take a decision from the Supreme Court to make people fully realize the capacity that older employees have to share their wisdom and understanding with younger employees. Diversity is something that is often celebrated in the workplace and that should apply to a diversity in age as well as gender, race and other characteristics. All these characteristics help to make up a unique work environment that can benefit everyone.
In Florida, with its sizable older population, there is so much wisdom and experience that can potentially be shared. If a person in Florida feels that he or she may have been subjected to age-related discrimination in an employment situation, it may make sense to consult with an attorney experienced in employment discrimination law. A lawyer can review the facts of the situation and advise the client as to what legal options may be available.