Older jobseeker feeling the pinch

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“Give me a chance” is the simple message from Graeme Smith, 67, who has been looking for work for six months.

For those aged over 60, it can be difficult to break back into employment.

Mr Smith, from Kendenup, has been searching for work for six months and is struggling financially.

Over the past six months, he posted several online advertisements asking for employment, but his ads only managed to attract 65 viewers and two responses so far.

“Nobody wants to hire oldies and I need a job so I can pay my bills” he said.

“They reckon young kids got more energy and they can work longer hours but I think I got better experience.

“It’s been happening all the time. I can remember when I was 45. even then I was too old, they want people who are 35.”

But Mr Smith is not the only senior struggling to find a job.

According to the Australian Bureau Statistics, there are almost 17,200 West Australians over the age of 50 listed as unemployed.

The number is close to 600 in the South West.

Because of Australia’s ageing population, more and more people above the age of 50 find themselves struggling without a job.

Mr Smith, originally from Fremantle, moved to Kendenup in 2016 in hope to find a quieter life.

He said he did not regret moving, even though he understood there were fewer job opportunities in a regional town like Kendenup.

“I’m willing to work anywhere around within 60-70km of Kendenup” he said.

“I even don’t mind driving or camping for a week for a job.

“I only need some casual or part-time work — 30 hours a week.

“That would be enough to pay for my daily bills.”

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