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2 Dec 2015

Apia's social experiment reveals hidden prejudice towards Over 50s

BREAKING DOWN SUBCONSCIOUS AGEISM: A social experiment launches today, revealing an uncomfortable case of age prejudice in a fictitious casting scenario.

Commissioned by Over 50s insurer, Apia, the experiment shows three young groups dismiss the 'older' talent, stating they lack "vitality" and "the right look", when in fact, the Over 50s mix includes the likes of a racecar driver, drone pilot and personal trainer.

The casting groups come face to face with the Over 50s talent at the end of the experiment, all experiencing a strong dose of reality as their own latent prejudices and misconceptions of age are revealed to the dynamic and youthful Over 50s group.

The social experiment was carried out in conjunction with a national study to uncover perceptions of those Over 50. The research found that two thirds of respondents aged Over 50 had faced age discrimination in their daily lives as well as feeling misrepresented in the media.

Apia Executive Manager, Geoff Keogh, says the statistics highlight a job to be done: "The research we undertook revealed some startling insights into perceptions of age in Australia. It's time to break through this stigma and start conversations around the topic. The social experiment highlighted an underlying prejudice that those involved may not have realised existed. Our campaign aims to demonstrate that life experience should be recognised and respected."

By generating mass conversation Apia sets out to value experience and have Over 50s proportionally and accurately represented by society and the media. Apia's spokesperson and iconic broadcaster Glenn Ridge believes age should never define what one is capable of, with a positive perspective on growth:

"I've found that Over 50s continually endeavor to reinvent themselves and adapt to changing times and situations. Staying vibrant, relevant and open to new experiences is something that's important at any age, not just as the years add up."

Ridge hopes the findings will shift perception and encourage society to think twice about dismissing those who are still shaping and challenging our future.


For further information, survey results, interviews with talent or imagery, please contact:

Lauren Hunt, Account Manager, Mango Communications
E: LaurenH@thisismango.com.au M: 0423 541 802

Amanda Sheat, Account Director, Mango Communications
E: AmandaS@thisismango.com.au M: 0424 574 572

Note to Editors:

*Survey conducted with sample size of 5,973 Australians aged 18+, by Lonergan Research on behalf of Apia.