If, in 2020, the employment rate fell among 15-24 year olds (-1.2 point) due to the drop in hiring and the non-renewal of contracts, that of seniors continued to increase (+ 0.7) despite the health crisis. INSEE explains this by the fact “that seniors have more seniority in their jobs and more frequently hold open-ended jobs”.
“As soon as they unplug the aid …”
But this increase, which has continued since 2009, could be stopped in 2021 with the acceleration in the number of social plans (+33% in the 4th quarter of 2020).
Layoff plans, “there will be everywhere as soon as they disconnect aid” and seniors are “often the first targeted because they are the most expensive”, while their ability to find a job is “complicated », Fears Benoît Serre, vice-president of the National Association of Human Resources Directors (ANDRH).
Even call not to forget this category on the side of Gilles Gateau, director general of the Association for the employment of executives (Apec), who warns against the return of the “terrible” reflex “of the adjustment of the employment through the eviction of senior citizens ”. The association recently launched “Senior Talents” to help unemployed executives over 50 years old.
At the end of 2020, there were already 964,000 unemployed over 50 years old. According to Pôle Emploi, their average registration period is 679 days, or 22 months, compared to 239 days for those under 25.
I am too young to retire and cannot find a job. Between these two things, we have nothing
Like Marie-Christine Vuillerme, 60, unemployed for two years in Reunion Island and registered on the dedicated recruitment platform “Seniors at your service”. Covid-19 does not help this woman who seeks a job in the trade and had “always found very easily”. “I’m too young to retire and can’t find a job. Between these two things, we have nothing, ”she laments.
“We say to ourselves that it’s dead”
“With covid, we know that there are thousands of young graduates who cannot find a job. So, the oldest, we say to ourselves that it is dead ”, remarks another“ young senior ”of 53 years. “To do any job, you are asked for a diploma with a training of one or two years”, even if “you are in the prime of life with 36,000 skills.”
“It’s still curious, we put the country at a standstill to save sick seniors. And we have the impression that this subject of the importance of seniors stops at the door of the company, ”notes Benoît Serre, for whom it is also a societal issue.
When a senior, who helps his parents and often also his children, becomes unemployed, “it is indeed three generations who foot the bill”, he pleads. “We could wake up with a hangover in a few years with a whole generation impoverished, downgraded.”
A “senior plan”?
ANDRH therefore calls for a “senior plan”, like the “One young person, one solution” plan. It proposes to strengthen the matching of the Personal training account (CPF) for this population which “does not train much” or to provide companies with an advantage in retaining seniors.
“Subject of concern”
As for the unions, it is also a “subject of concern” for the CFDT, “in particular whether they are target audiences in devices such as collective contractual breaks, PES and voluntary departure plans, which have not yet been activated. by companies since they are on a drip, ”explains Marylise Léon.
For his part, Cyril Chabanier, of the CFTC, underlines that, young as well as seniors, “the two ends” of the population “are the most affected” and invites not to forget the oldest employees.
At Pôle Emploi, we are wary of “reasoning by age categories”, preferring to “individualize the diagnosis”, recently recalled its deputy general manager Paul Bazin. Because “a 55-year-old very long-term job seeker does not encounter the same problems as an applicant who registers for the first time”.
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