Ageism: a light at the end of the tunnel

Our age-based concept. There is always someone older than us and we never see ourselves like this. Growing old is to walk towards a place to where we do not want to go. Beyond our concerns regarding the process and fears in the face of finitude consciousness, we have to deal with one of the most perverse strategies of social exclusion, which is the age prejudice, the ageism.

Although articles and studies are very pessimistic about the subject, I truly believe in a decrease of age prejudice in our society, and especially in the labor market. I will list the reasons here:

Increase in life expectancy and decrease in birth and fertility rates. With fewer births and longer life expectancy, the tendency is to have more people growing old in the work environment, bringing more homogenization in this sense. As a rule, the prejudice expresses itself among people from different groups (from old to young people, from young to old people).

Growth of Corporate Activism in Brazil. The institutional involvement of companies in debates on often controversial social issues such as gender equity, racism and homophobia tends to favor the discussions on ageism.

Expansion of debates on diversity and inclusion, especially in social media. The influence that supporting positive causes can bring to an increase in revenue and brand value can privilege issues related to prejudice. Ageism is a prejudice that embraces all others, especially in old age.

Consumption potential of the mature public, the "silver ocean". In the post-pandemic crisis, companies will be more likely to look for original alternatives to leverage the results, thus being able to realize the opportunities offered by the life expectancy market, which moves huge figures around the world.

Home office expansion. This trend allows the work to be developed by any skilled person, without interferences from issues related to appearance, one of the aspects raised in academic researches about ageism in the corporate environment.

Progression of the elderly people in the digital environment. The technological updating forced by quarantine has broken down two major stereotypes related to the mature people: the difficulty in dealing with technology and the low learning capacity. From now on, it is expected that these arguments will be put aside.

Considering that all of us can be exposed to ageism from one moment to another, it seems clear that we must become active in this fight. I have mentioned six arguments which, in my opinion, can help in the fight against this kind of prejudice. And you, can you think of any other argument so that together we can get to the end of this tunnel faster? 

Fran Winandy