A ban on Graduate Wanted?

Updated: 
Graduates may need to read between the lines when they apply for a job. That's because a new UK Supreme Court ruling claims companies who advertise for graduates could be discriminating against older British workers.

So an end to "degree-qualified" or "graduate" job offers? Very possibly.



Fair?

The change hinges on a judgement concerning an ex-police officer. Terence Homer, an ex detective inspector, was effectively disqualified from a newly introduced top tier at the Police National Legal Database because he didn't have a law degree - and he was not given enough time, at 62, to take a law degree before retiring at 65.


But a new Supreme Court ruling means that Homer suffered indirect discrimination. Which means UK employers from now will have to be rather more careful when recruiting, particularly if they are targeting graduates.

Going the other way, since 2006 employers now cannot specify a certain number of years' experience for many roles in case it discriminates against younger candidates.

University = higher intelligence?

More broadly, this decision could rankle many. However many UK employers still equate a university degree with a higher intelligence or IQ. And many older people are put off applying for jobs when an advert is clearly directed at a younger candidate.

Lawyer Beth Hale from legal firm Stephenson Harwood told AOL Money that the move is not as groundbreaking as some claim. "When the Age Discrimination regulations came out in 2006 we all thought that a requirement of a Degree might constitute indirect age discrimatinon. And so it has proved."

She goes on: "The degree itself is often not what is necessary. Employers should think hard about why they are asking for a Degree and whether an equivalent or work experience would suffice."

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