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No Choice or the Right Choice
by Janet Torley on 26/08/2014

The unfairness that seems exists for ladies of a certain age in the workplace was brought home to me again just recently.  There may have been leaps and bound in HR discrimination legislation over the past few years but it still remains fact that maturer ladies looking for fresh employment stand much less chance of successfully changing career direction or even just getting to the top of the CV pile.

I’m not talking about super high flyers here – it’s the experienced admin assistants, the loyal secretaries, the trusted care professionals……..

One route open to mature ladies is to go self employed and freelance their skills and  experience.  But is it through choice or through lack of anything else?  And what happens when the 50+ lady makes the leap.  What support is there.  Again I am not talking about those with nice chunky public sector payoff cushions or those lucky enough to have an early retirement plan in place that just needs topped up with some  pocket money.  It’s Mrs or Ms Average whose juggled family responsibilities and work for 30 odd years.  It seems to me that you need to be disadvantaged in some way before you can get any help beyond the standard Business Gateway Support.  No test the market grants, no polish your confidence courses, no nothing – certainly not here in Scotland as far as I am aware.  If there is support, then it is well hidden and doesn’t slip off the tongue.

I wonder if the lack of support, both financial and moral, is why so many ladies of a certain age just decide it’s not worth it and that they really don’t have a choice!