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For Immediate Release


Dec. 28, 2007

Ministry of Attorney General

and Minister responsible for Multiculturalism




VICTORIA As of Jan. 1, 2008, employees can choose when they want to retire. Changes to human rights legislation protect all people 19 years and over from discrimination on the basis of age. This means people cannot be forced to retire.


            The law will apply to most workplaces in British Columbia, except those regulated by the federal government.


The change to B.C.’s Human Rights Code – introduced last May – is the result of a recommendation from the Premier’s Council on Aging and Seniors’ Issues. The change gives mature workers in British Columbia choices to continue their contribution to the workforce, if that is their wish.


As the growing population of mature workers reach retirement age within the next decade, eliminating mandatory retirement will allow the workforce to retain people with significant skill sets and experience. People who choose to retire at or before age 65 will be able to continue to do so.


Until the new law is in force on Jan. 1, age discrimination protection under the Human Rights Code applies to adults 19 to 64. The change is not retroactive, meaning that it does not compel businesses to rehire an employee if the person has already retired.


Further information is available at:






David Townsend

Public Affairs Officer

Ministry of Attorney General

250 387-4962


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