Vulnerability of young and older workers across europe in times of

The concept of vulnerability is used in different contexts to refer to a higher propensity of particular individuals or groups for risk, danger of deterioration in conditions or poor outcomes or achievements. Several factors may be seen as causing or influencing vulnerability, for instance: physical e.

As such, vulnerability may be approached from different viewpoints, for instance individual conditions and behaviours, structural and systemic material conditions or also social relations and insecurity, and thus needs to be seen as a multidimensional concept and in relational terms.

Every person in whatever context may feel vulnerable at some point in life, however, some individuals and groups are more vulnerable than others. The United Nations distinguish three different groups of people that are vulnerable, to what and for which reasons.

These are, first, the poor and informal workers, who are socially excluded, who are vulnerable against economic and health shocks for reasons of limited capabilities. Second, women, people with disabilities, migrantsminorities, children, the elderly and youth, who are vulnerable against natural disasters, climate change and industrial hazards for reasons of their location, position in society and during sensitive periods in the life cycle.

Third, whole communities and regions that are vulnerable against conflicts or civil unrests for reasons of low social cohesion, unresponsive institutions and poor governance UNDP These vulnerable situations may be caused by structural or life cycle circumstances.

Structural vulnerability is a result of unequal treatment by society as for instance concerning gender, ethnicityjob type or social status.

However, structural vulnerability is not a result of a special characteristic, but has to be understood as a process of ascription and positioning in social society. The exclusion of participating in society caused by belonging to a certain group may lead to structural vulnerability and thus subject individuals and groups to disadvantages UNDP22ff. Life cycle vulnerability refers to threats that individuals face across different stages of their life — from infancy through youth, adulthood and old age — and may differ according to them in terms of poverty, gender differences and unemployment.

Youth, for instance, is a key period of transition when children learn to engage with society and the world of work and thus may be seen as a period of enhanced risks in terms of vulnerability UNDP However, it is important to note that vulnerability is not a natural category but has to be viewed as constructed, relational, and multidimensional.

Human Development Report Vulnerability The concept of vulnerability is used in different contexts to refer to a higher propensity of particular individuals or groups for risk, danger of deterioration in conditions or poor outcomes or achievements.

Young people and safety and health at work

Subscribe to our Newsletter.Recent immigrants and refugees have higher rates of work-related injuries and illnesses compared to Canadian-born workers.

As a result, they are often labelled as vulnerable workers. This study explored the factors that contribute to occupational health and safety OHS vulnerability of recent immigrants and refugees with a focus on modifiable factors such as exposure to hazards and access to workplace protections, awareness of OHS and worker rights, and empowerment to act on those rights.

Eighteen focus groups were conducted with recent immigrants and refugees about their experiences looking for work and in their first jobs in Canada. A thematic content analysis was used to organize the data and to identify and report themes. The jobs described by participants typically involved poor working conditions and exposure to hazards without adequate workplace protections.

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Most participants had limited knowledge of OHS and employment rights and tended to not voice safety concerns to employers. Understanding OHS vulnerability from the lens of workplace context can help identify modifiable conditions that affect the risk of injury and illness among recent immigrants and refugees. Safe work integration depends on providing these workers with information about their rights, adequate job training, and opportunities for participating in injury prevention.

In light of these challenges, compared to Canadian-born workers, immigrants are less likely to work in jobs that match their education level and professional experience [ 10131415 ] and typically earn lower wages [ 161718 ].

vulnerability of young and older workers across europe in times of

The precarious situation of recent immigrants and refugees in the labor market also has important implications for occupational health and safety OHS.

Overqualification has been linked to work injury [ 19 ] and lower pay can result in working longer hours, which has also been associated with increased risk of injury [ 20 ]. In addition, compared to their non-immigrant counterparts, immigrants are more likely to perform physically demanding jobs [ 212223 ], be exposed to OHS hazards [ 2425262728 ], and lack health and safety protection [ 293031 ].

They are also less likely to receive formal job training and information on health and safety [ 243233 ]. As a result, immigrants have higher rates of work-related injuries and illnesses compared to non-immigrants [ 263435363738 ]. Due to increased risk of injury, immigrant workers are often labelled as vulnerable workers [ 3940 ]. In defining the vulnerability of immigrant workers, the majority of studies in the OHS literature focus on the migration and socio-demographic factors e.

However, workplace context is being increasingly recognized as a modifiable driving factor of OHS vulnerability [ 4142434445 ]. Moyce and Schenker [ 41 ], in their recent review of research on the OHS of migrant workers, suggested that unregulated and unsafe working conditions e. While none of these dimensions are novel, they specifically posited that OHS vulnerability is created when workers are exposed to hazards in combination with inadequate access to protections to control those hazards.

Examples of hazards are exposure to hazardous substances, working with dangerous tools and equipment, or performing potentially injurious tasks such as repetitive movement and heavy lifting [ 46 ]. Hazardous work has been linked to work-related injuries [ 47 ]. Risks and hazards are also negatively related to worker participation in safety and safety compliance [ 48 ]. Workplace-level OHS protections and policies aim to protect workers from exposure to hazards and other workplace risks.

Examples of workplace protections are access to proper safety equipment, identification and controlling of hazardous substances and replacement of defective equipment [ 42 ]. Safety policies can include organizational polices related to compliance with OHS standards, communication about and responsiveness to health and safety issues, and workplace health and safety training provided to workers [ 4246 ]. Safety knowledge can be acquired through workplace trainings and on the job experience [ 49 ].

OHS empowerment refers to the extent to which individuals feel free to voice health and safety concerns, ask questions about health and safety and refuse unsafe duties [ 42 ]. In a review of studies exploring the relationship between workplace factors and workplace injuries, Shannon and colleagues [ 51 ] found that worker empowerment was related to lower injury rates.

Smith and colleagues suggested that vulnerability is defined as situations where workers are exposed to hazards in combination with inadequate protections from these hazards OHS policies and procedures, awareness of rights and responsibilities, and worker empowerment [ 42 ]. Figure 1 demonstrates the OHS vulnerability conceptual framework for how hazards and lack of workplace protections overlap to create vulnerable conditions.

Workers who are exposed to hazards in the workplace in combination with inadequate workplace OHS policies and procedures, low awareness of rights and responsibilities, or a workplace culture that discourages worker participation in safety are considered most vulnerable and at greatest risk of occupational injury and illness.

OHS vulnerability framework led to the development of a measure to define more accurately which workers are vulnerable to work injury and illness.

vulnerability of young and older workers across europe in times of

In a quantitative study comparing these dimensions of OHS vulnerability between recent Canadian immigrants and workers born in Canada, Lay and colleagues [ 45 ] observed that recent immigrants were more likely to experience exposure to work hazards, less likely to access to protective policy and procedures in the workplace and were less empowered to participate in injury prevention in their workplace e.

However, the exact mechanisms that lead to these differences in dimensions of OHS vulnerability between recent immigrants and Canadian-born workers are not fully understood. For example, Lay and colleagues [ 45 ] suggested that immigrant workers experience higher levels of policy and procedure vulnerability.AT no point in recorded history has our world been so demographically lopsided, with old people concentrated in rich countries and the young in not-so-rich countries.

Much has been made of the challenges of aging societies. The parable of our time might well be: Mind your young, or they will trouble you in your old age. A fourth of humanity is now young ages 10 to The vast majority live in the developing worldaccording to the United Nations Population Fund.

Nowhere can the pressures of the youth bulge be felt as profoundly as in India. Every month, some one million young Indians turn 18 — coming of age, looking for work, registering to vote and making India home to the largest number of young, working-age people anywhere in the world. Already, the number of Indians between the ages of 15 and 34 — million — is roughly the same as the combined populations of the United States, Canada and Britain.

Many are in no position to land a decent job at home. And millions are moving, from country to city, and to cities in faraway countries, where they are increasingly unwelcome.

Democratically elected presidents and potentates are equally aware: Aspirations, when thwarted, can be a potent, spiteful force. No longer can you be sure that a large swell of young working-age people will enrich your country, as they did a generation ago in East Asia. Kenny, an economist at the Washington-based Center for Global Development. A case in point are the caste protests that paralyzed a prospering North Indian state in recent weeks.

They were driven by a powerful landowning caste whose sons can neither support themselves through farming nor secure the jobs of their choice. So the protesters took to the streets demanding caste-based quotas for government posts. They blocked rail lines and set trucks on fire; the police say 30 people died in the unrest.

Every year, the country must create an estimated 12 million to 17 million jobs. Worldwide, young workers are in precarious straits. In the developing world, where few can afford to be unemployed, most young workers have jobs that are sporadic, poorly paid and offer no legal protection; women are worse off.

Youth unemployment is especially striking in richer countries.

vulnerability of young and older workers across europe in times of

In the United States, nearly 17 percent of those between the ages of 16 and 29 are neither in school nor working. That does not bode well. In some ways, the global demographic portrait reflects what we are doing right: Our babies are far less likely to die, and our grandparents live longer. Women have fewer children, and die less often in childbirth. More good news: Primary school enrollment has shot up in the developing world.

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In India, for instance, nearly all children are enrolled in school. But even those gains are uneven. According to the latest survey carried out by a national nonprofit called Pratham, half of Indian schoolchildren enrolled in fifth grade are unable to read from a second-grade textbook, and half cannot subtract.We talk an awful lot about Millennials and Generation Z.

How to attract them, hire them, and keep them in our company. Many studies have been done, experts have been consulted, all to figure out the magic formula to keep these younger generations happy and engaged. Aging workforce statistics What is the aging workforce?

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In the US alone, 10 baby boomers turn 65 every day. According to an article by Arlene S. HirschM. A mini-guide to practicing HR including 7 universally applicable best practices.

In countries like Germany, Finland, and Sweden among others the number of mature workers is already close to 1 in five. As a comparison, for every 10 Generation Z members, there are 12 people aged 65 or older in the EU.

The aging workforce is — as its name suggests — the part of working individuals that has reached a certain age and beyond. It used to be defined as those who are 40 years or older. In which case 1 out of 4 workers in the US will qualify as part of the aging workforce as early as in …. There are various reasons why the workforce is getting older. Jeffrey Tamburo lists 4 of them in his article for the American Society on Aging :. What are the main trends and — most importantly — what are the solutions for HR?

There is a wide range of challenges for HR when it comes to the aging workforce. A big one to start with. Older workers are less flexible, less motivated, too slow, they take more sick days, etc. These are just a few of the many stereotypes people — older workers included — have about senior workers. As such, bias is one of the toughest aging workforce challenges. Once inside, they can take tests to measure things like their balance, their ability to work in a team and their memory.

Bias or not, absenteeism is an aging workforce trend. But before jumping to conclusions about the reasons for the higher absenteeism rates among your older employees, try to find out the real reason. Just ask them! This is exactly what happened in a big European postal company. This is not uncommon in this part of the population and the predominantly long-term absence indicated chronical, physical issues.

The company assumed this had to do with the workload. To conquer this trend they decided to ease the work for the older population of their workforce by introducing extra holidays for these workers. It was costly to implement but absence for the aging workforce remained at similar, high levels.

When they finally asked their older employees what the problem was, they found out it had nothing to do with wanting more holidays. Keep your skills relevant by boosting your business acumen, analytics capabilities, and consulting skills to become a HRBP 2.It seems no industry has been immune to the interruptions caused by coronavirus and in the city that never sleeps, some of the biggest cultural institutions have had to dream up new ways to engage beyond the walls of a museum.

These institutions are typically staffed with art educators who present a depth of knowledge for visitors, but the recent, sudden closures have cost those contract employees their jobs. UAW Locala local labor union that represents nearly professional and administrative staff at MoMa, told ABC News that the museum's educators "were unceremoniously dumped.

One New York City -based arts educator, who asked to remain anonymous, told ABC News that after over two years working for the MoMa, she and the rest of her colleagues found out abruptly via email that their services were -- as the educator put it -- "no longer required. We are deeply grateful for their past contributions to the Museum. We wish them and their loved ones safety and health in this difficult time.

As promised, those of you who were scheduled to perform work at the Museum over the last two weeks will receive a final payment for work through March All other future engagements are cancelled and no further payments will be made. As of Friday evening, the arts educator from MoMa says she received "a kind note" from her supervisor's personal email, but says she has yet to hear from the museum directly since they sent out the email on March 30, but said she has communicated with her team of about 15 other educators "who are all deeply saddened and shocked at how this transpired.

They're really struggling and that's evident across the board. However, every single other institution I work for -- six major NYC museums -- has reached out to communicate transparently where there are coming from and how much they value the work we do," she explained of the juxtaposition of how the news was delivered. Rosenstein highlighted the value of those jobless educators has always been "vital" to the museum's involvement with its community.

The former MoMa contract employee explained that some of New York City's other top museums have reached out to partner with other art educators "to come up with new strategies to engage our audiences in this new landscape or to continue programming online.

Many museums have turned to online exhibits, virtual tours, e-books and more to inspire the art community, leaning heavily on social media to present art in new ways as Americans adjust to a "new normal" staying at home, going out only for essentials and practicing social distancing as mandated by the CDC.

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The hashtag MuseumFromHome has garnered additional attention on Twitter so that people can consume more art right from their devices. While larger institutions have endowments, grants and other financial means to potentially help weather the revenue impacts of COVID, smaller institutions don't. The Tenement Museum on Manhattan's Lower East Side, represents evolving stories of immigration in America through exhibits, programs and curriculum and is now asking the public for support amid the "extraordinary crisis.

We need your help -- now more than ever -- to get us through this financial crisis. Sadly, since there does not seem to be a solid timeline of when activities like going to museums will resume in the U. The art educator told ABC News that while the creative online learning experiences and collections have created a new space that was once housed on the museum's walls, she believes it will be difficult to ever function long term without those workers expertise.

What is deeply unnerving is how long MoMA says they might be going without educators for," she said, adding that the email explained MoMa may not need them "for years. When it is safe and feasible to reopen the Museum, it will be months, if not years, before we anticipate returning to budget and operations levels to require educator services," the email stated. Shows Good Morning America. World News Tonight. This Week. The View.

What Would You Do? Sections U. Virtual Reality.

vulnerability of young and older workers across europe in times of

We'll notify you here with news about. Turn on desktop notifications for breaking stories about interest?The tripartite EU agency providing knowledge to assist in the development of better social, employment and work-related policies. The ageing population and the consequent increase in the share of older workers in the workforce have raised concerns among both policy makers and social partners across Europe.

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In France, the employment rate of older workers is still below the EU average, although it has increased slightly in the last decade. Download report [pdf, size kb].

Figure 1 shows that the proportion of older workers is higher than average in finance and real estate, services and industry. It also shows that the rate has increased since in all sectors except construction, while remaining relatively stable in finance and real estate.


Ten years of employment policies for older workers Recognising the difficulties likely to be caused by a rapidly ageing workforce, social partners and policy makers have implemented many measures intended to keep older workers in employment over the last decade. The following list outlines the most important of these. Other measures not specifically intended to help older workers remain in the labour market have nevertheless had a positive impact on their employment, such as the anti-discrimination law, the health at work plan and the law on disability.

Several communication campaigns have also promoted the positive attributes of older workers. Inthe activity rate of male workers between the ages of 55 and 59 was For male workers between the ages of 60 and 64, it was There has been a substantial rise in the labour market activity rate of women too.

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In this was Similarly, the rate was It is also noticeable that the rise in activity rates gradually accelerated over the decade. Last but not least, compared with the rest of Europe, the French activity rate of older workers aged 60—64 years is lower than the overall average in the EU15 countries The employment rate of French workers aged 55—59 years is closer to the EU average A representative sample of business leaders and human resource professionals from a range of sectors industry, construction, trade, transport, finance and real estate, consulting were questioned.

Only enterprises which employed at least one person over the age of 50 throughout the year were included in the sample.

What’s the Problem? Youth and Vulnerability in a Global Perspective

Data collection was conducted in two waves between November and February The first wave consisted of questionnaires that were designed to collect quantitative factual data covering the yearin particular about the reasons for labour turnover of employees on permanent contracts in such as dismissals, resignations, early retirement, regular retirement, compulsory retirement. To collect subjective data such as assessments and opinions, 4, telephone interviews were conducted about age management policies in the workplace, anticipation of employment and skills of older workers, managing ends of careers, general opinions about workers aged 50 or older, and how the company planned to maintain their employment.

The authors have stressed that answers to this last question were interpreted as the opinions of the interviewees and did not necessarily reflect the policies and practices in place.

As the sample was drawn from official registers, the results could then be adjusted to account for non-response and so maintain representativeness. Drawing exclusively on workplaces that employed at least one older worker in made it possible to focus on those establishments directly affected by the issue.

On the other hand, the sample was necessarily biased because the employment of older workers is not distributed evenly across the economy. In particular, workplaces with fewer than ten employees are less likely to employ one person of at least 50 years of age.

Similarly the service sector, where very small workplaces are common, has a significantly lower level of older workers.The tripartite EU agency providing knowledge to assist in the development of better social, employment and work-related policies. Young workers in Europe have long faced many difficulties in their transition into the labour market and particularly in finding secure employment.

The financial crisis of has worsened this situation significantly. Though there are important regional and sectoral variations, national debates as to the causes of these problems focus on a complex interaction of labour market structures, skills training, access to vocational training and apprenticeships, education systems, and reduction of job openings.

Governments have been particularly active in promoting a range of labour market policies. Of these the promotion of apprenticeships seems to have attracted widespread support across the EU.

The study was compiled on the basis of individual national reports submitted by the EIRO correspondents. The text of each of these national reports is available below.

The reports have not been edited or approved by the European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions. The national reports were drawn up in response to a questionnaire and should be read in conjunction with it. See also the Executive Summary. Why focus on young workers? The particularly vulnerable situation of young workers in the labour market has long been a concern of policymakers and social partners at European and national levels.

Young people are in a particularly challenging position in relation to work opportunities and conditions of work.

Aging Workforce Challenges: Trends, Statistics and Impact

Unemployment and precarious work also bring with them the absence of financial autonomy which may constrain opportunities to live independently, start a relationship and begin a family. Across the European Union, young people have been particularly badly hit by the economic crisis of and the subsequent financial challenges facing Member States.

Youth unemployment typically reacts more quickly and more strongly to changes in economic trends than other groups. Unemployment is not the only challenge facing young workers. Even before the crisis ofsocial partners and public authorities in many Member States were concerned about the situation of young workers because of the high rates of youth unemployment in comparison with other workers. In addition, young people have been far more likely than other groups to find themselves in precarious work and to move in and out of employment.

As shown in previous research, including a Eurofound report kb PDF published in and a report 3. Combined with the effects of redundancy schemes that often target those with the least experience and fewest skills, as well as employer decisions to reduce recruitment efforts, young workers are notably more vulnerable than those in older age groups in an economic crisis. An obvious manifestation of the vulnerability of young workers is seen in the steep increase in youth unemployment rates across EU Member States during andwith rates often three times higher than average unemployment.

There is also evidence in some Member States that the rate of precarious employment for this group of workers has increased since Although trends in precarious work are more difficult to capture than unemployment trends, Labour Force Survey data from Eurostat show a rise in young temporary workers in Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Latvia, Luxembourg, Hungary and the UK.

These developments imply serious consequences for personal development as well as social cohesion. There is strong evidence from previous recessions that the effects of extended periods of unemployment early in life continue to have a negative impact on individuals throughout their adult life.

This effect appears to manifest itself in a wide range of problematic outcomes including reduced life earnings, continued experience of unemployment and precarious work, poorer health outcomes, and even decreased life expectancy. But the effects are not only on individuals. Furthermore, it is probable that early experiences of insecurity in employment reduce the likelihood of young people establishing financial autonomy and may well be related to trends towards postponing starting a family.

Causal evidence of this is, of course, difficult to establish. But it is important to note that the interest of policymakers is not simply economic; the potentially problematic social outcomes of high levels of youth unemployment and precarious work are attracting increasing attention. There are some exceptions to these trends. For example, young people in Norway have generally been less affected by the crisis of than in other European countries largely because of the very high proportion who continue in non-compulsory education, facilitated by legal rights to attend upper-secondary school, college and university, as well as financial support from the state to do so.


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