Does Protecting Older Workers from Discrimination Make it Harder to Get Hired? Evidence from Disability Discrimination Laws

69 Pages Posted: 20 Jul 2015 Last revised: 2 Dec 2022

See all articles by David Neumark

David Neumark

University of California, Irvine - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Joanne Song McLaughlin

University at Buffalo

Patrick Button

Tulane University, Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Date Written: July 2015

Abstract

We explore the effects of disability discrimination laws on hiring of older workers. A concern with anti-discrimination laws is that they may reduce hiring by raising the cost of terminations and – in the specific case of disability discrimination laws – raising the cost of employment because of the need to accommodate disabled workers. Moreover, disability discrimination laws can affect non-disabled older workers because they are fairly likely to develop work-related disabilities, yet are not protected by these laws. Using state variation in disability discrimination protections, we find little or no evidence that stronger disability discrimination laws lower the hiring of non-disabled older workers. We similarly find no evidence of adverse effects of disability discrimination laws on hiring of disabled older workers.

Suggested Citation

Neumark, David and McLaughlin, Joanne and Button, Patrick, Does Protecting Older Workers from Discrimination Make it Harder to Get Hired? Evidence from Disability Discrimination Laws (July 2015). NBER Working Paper No. w21379, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2633335

David Neumark (Contact Author)

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IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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Joanne McLaughlin

University at Buffalo ( email )

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Patrick Button

Tulane University, Department of Economics ( email )

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IZA Institute of Labor Economics ( email )

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