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Age Discrimination?

Nurses   (1,044 Views 8 Comments)
by SueB1967 SueB1967 (New Member) New Member

SueB1967 specializes in PAR,OR, ICU, Peds HH, MS.

839 Visitors; 7 Posts

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Yes, the 1967 is the year I graduated as a diploma RN. I have run the gamet of nursing specialties during my 40 year career. Recently I applied for a position on a geropsych unit and really felt that the interview went well-they were particularly interested in my strong med surg experience. However I was called today and did not get the job but was told they would keep my application on file as they expect the (new) unit to expand. I'm wondering if my age was a factor. It certainly is something that I cannot prove but somehow felt a little uncomfortable about. Are there any older nurses out there that have had similar feelings? I would really like to experience psych nursing but wonder if it is even worth pursueing! Thanks all!

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21,296 Visitors; 6,487 Posts

Did you try asking the interviewer the reason someone else was chosen? You have every right to do that, in the vein of "What do I need to change about my interview tactics to get the job next time?"

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chuck1234 specializes in Nurses who are mentally sicked.

6,764 Visitors; 629 Posts

It is very hard to prove it, but there is always a possibility.

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allantiques4me specializes in Brain injury,vent,peds ,geriatrics,home.

5,870 Visitors; 481 Posts

Cudos to you !!Suebe67!!You can probably find a job anywhere,if they dont appreciate your experience,then too bad for themI.m sure you can find a new job elsewhere.

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Jo Dirt has 9 years experience.

17,073 Visitors; 3,270 Posts

I have worked with several older nurses, but I would not doubt if it came down to some 22 y/o and someone more advanced in years they would choose the younger one. It's disgusting and it is so unfair but discrimination is a part of life whether we like it or not. Of course it's illegal, it's illegal because it is most always impossible to prove and can be disguised as so many other things.

I'm no stranger to discrimination and I'm discriminated against today. I've accepted it will be something I will have to deal with the rest of my life.

There isn't really anything a person can do.

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MrChicagoRN has 30 years experience and specializes in Leadership, Psych, HomeCare, Amb. Care.

28,282 Visitors; 2,589 Posts

I'm wondering if my age was a factor. It certainly is something that I cannot prove but somehow felt a little uncomfortable about. Are there any older nurses out there that have had similar feelings? I would really like to experience psych nursing but wonder if it is even worth pursueing! Thanks all!

Whenever we don't get chosen we 2nd guess as to why.

Was it your age? Maybe.

What was the staffing on the unit? The average age of RN is currently ~50 years old. I think your maturity would be seen as an asset in that setting.

Then the question is...How did you present yourself at the interview?

Did they see an energetic skilled nurse ready to take on new challenges? Appear able to meet the physical requirements of the patients? Did you demonstrate a basic understanding of psychiatric dynamics in the elderly, and of dementia. Did you demonstrate an eagerness to learn what you needed to know?

In the interview did you stress how your skills could be of great benefit to their unit?

Maybe you interviewed perfectly, I have no way of knowing but atttitude is everything. I just got hired for an inpatient after pursuing other arenas for the past 17 years, but I made sure they understood how my HC & ambulatory care skills were all relevent to their inpatient needs.

Don't give up. If this is what you want, keep at it. Maybe get some pt experience in a similar setting elsewhere. Send a note, or call the unit leader in a few months & let them know you are still interested if something opens up.

Good Luck

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2,545 Visitors; 177 Posts

Hi- I work in consulting in geropsych, by the way. Yea,I have to wonder if this might have been age discrimination. The need for well versed nurses in geropsych is quite high-and as you indicate you have umpteen years in med-surg. But again, -very difficult to prove.

Frankly, their loss I'd bet. I would also hedge a bet that they call you. I truly know what the turn around can be like for geropsych. It can be extremely stressful. So if you send a letter back to then "thanking" them for the interview anyway I bet they keep you in mind. I'd send it to the Director of Nursing as well as a "key" person who interviewed you.

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14,237 Visitors; 2,441 Posts

It's very difficult for older folks to change jobs, and this happens at the highest of levels.

My uncle (now deceased), many, many years ago was the CFO for Kiplinger's (yeah, THE Kiplinger's). He had been with the company for years, and just didn't think he was getting paid enough. He was in his mid-50's, had an incredible resume for one of the most respected names in the business world.

He asked for a significant raise, they wouldn't give it to him. He threatened to quit, they let him....and just about NEVER found another job, and never did replace his salary.

He ended up taking a job as the CFO for a large Washington, DC country club. A far cry from where he was...in every respect.

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