Do State Laws Protecting Older Workers from Discrimination Laws Reduce Age Discrimination in Hiring? Experimental (and Nonexperimental) Evidence

50 Pages Posted: 17 Jan 2017

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

Ian Burn

Stockholm University - Swedish Institute for Social Research (SOFI)

Patrick Button

Tulane University, Department of Economics

Nanneh Chehras

University of California, Irvine, Department of Economics, Students

Date Written: September 2016

Abstract

We provide evidence from a field experiment — a correspondence study — on age discrimination in hiring for retail sales jobs. We collect experimental data in all 50 states and then relate measured age discrimination — the difference in callback rates between old and young applicants — to variation across states in antidiscrimination laws offering protections to older workers that are stronger than the federal age and disability discrimination laws. We do a similar analysis for nonexperimental data on differences across states in hiring rates of older versus younger workers. The experimental evidence points consistently to evidence of hiring discrimination against older men and more so against older women. However, the evidence on the relationship between hiring discrimination against older workers and state variation in age and disability discrimination laws is not so clear; at a minimum, there is not a compelling case that stronger state protections reduce hiring discrimination against older workers. In contrast, the non-experimental evidence suggests that stronger disability discrimination protections increase the relative hiring of older workers.

Keywords: Older Workers, Age Discrimination, Disability Discrimination

Suggested Citation

Neumark, David and Burn, Ian and Button, Patrick and Chehras, Nanneh, Do State Laws Protecting Older Workers from Discrimination Laws Reduce Age Discrimination in Hiring? Experimental (and Nonexperimental) Evidence (September 2016). Michigan Retirement Research Center Research Paper No. 2016-349. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2900439 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2900439

David Neumark (Contact Author)

University of California, Irvine - Department of Economics ( email )

3151 Social Science Plaza
Irvine, CA 92697-5100
United States
949-824-8496 (Phone)
949-824-2182 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.socsci.uci.edu/~dneumark/

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Ian Burn

Stockholm University - Swedish Institute for Social Research (SOFI) ( email )

Kyrkgatan 43B
SE-106 91 Stockholm
Sweden

HOME PAGE: http://ianburn.com

Patrick Button

Tulane University, Department of Economics ( email )

New Orleans, LA 70118
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.patrickbutton.com

Nanneh Chehras

University of California, Irvine, Department of Economics, Students ( email )

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