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

Source: David Neumark, Joanne Song, Patrick Button, National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), NBER Working Paper No. w21379, July 2015
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From the 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 worker