News / Calgary

Seniors, teens vie for jobs in competitive Calgary summer job market

Calgarians aged 55 and older are giving teens a run for their money in the hunt for 2012 summer jobs.

Employment among those aged 55 plus rose 5.5 per cent between April 2011 and April 2012, according to Statistics Canada. Many could be heading back to the job market after post-recession retirement losses.

And those 55 and over appear to be after jobs typically held by teens – one area being retail.

“Definitely, there may be some competition with that demographic versus the youth demographic,” said Jessica Pauletig, community relations liaison, at the Calgary Youth Employment Centre.

“When you’re young, it can be hard to compete against someone that many years older and having that much experience,” Pauletig added.

Calgary teen, Darian Magee, 18, has been struggling to find employment since January.

“I guess I’m not as experienced as the senior citizens,” she said.

Claire Arneson, direct hire solutions provider at About Staffing has noticed the trend, but said youth have an advantage over their greying job competitors.

“In some cases, it’s harder for more experienced workers to find work because they’re viewed as over-qualified,” said Arneson.

Semi-Retiree, David Sastaunik, 62, scours the Internet for hours every day searching for a job.

Sastaunik said he’s become familiar with age discrimination.

“The managers look down on you since they’re approximately one-half your age,” he said.

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