You worked at the same company for 20 years because you were a dedicated employee who cared about the job, the business and your co-workers. Yes, you also liked the stability of the job and the way your pay went up with each raise, but you deliberately chose not to leave.
Then they fired you and replaced you with a fresh college graduate. Were you a victim of age discrimination?
Hiring someone younger
You may have been. Companies sometimes actively discriminate against older workers because they want to bring in younger workers. They may say that they need someone who can do a more physical task or who understands modern technology a bit better or something along those lines. But, in many cases, they’re just making excuses. The real reason is that they want to save money.
After all, there are those who say that older workers get paid too much and that it would be wise to fire them and hire younger workers instead. Maybe they are regretting those raises they gave you. Maybe they want to cut you out of your pension or retirement plan. Maybe they just want the “public face” of the company to get younger, so they are firing anyone over a certain age, regardless of the job that they’re doing.
What are your options?
The unfortunate truth is that your employer may not be as loyal to you as you are to them. If you are illegally fired, you need to know what options you have and what legal steps you can take.