EU Employers Urged to Plan Now for Older Workforce

At a seminar in Dublin, the European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions explains how improved working conditions can aid in retention of older workers. This is now a key concern for European businesses.

The eighth edition of the Foundation Seminar Series is taking place this week in Dublin, Ireland, with the host European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions (Eurofound) focused this time on how to make workplaces more hospitable to older workers. Eurofound said this is particularly timely because 2012 will be the European Year of Active Ageing.

Several Western countries are facing aging populations, and this is especially true in Europe. "If trends are sustained, with each generation there will be less people (productive population) contributing to the welfare state policies, mainly state pensions and healthcare systems, needed by an increasing number of people outside the labour market (older people mainly). Therefore, ageing threatens the macroeconomic performance and competitiveness of European countries and the sustainability of social protection systems, especially against the background of poor economic performance and austerity in public budgets," Eurofound notes.

The seminar is covering three areas where the foundation says older workers may face particular challenges:

  • Increasing training opportunities
  • Developing health management
  • Providing adequate work organization

Eurofound is an EU body created in 1975 to contribute to the planning and design of better living and working conditions in Europe.

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