Australia's older workers on low incomes tend to have poorer health, but they are being expected to work longer.

In partnership with the University of Melbourne, the Brotherhood of St Laurence is conducting a study of the connections between health and work among older adults employed in low-income roles in the aged care sector. Australia’s workforce is becoming older and the labour force participation rates of older adults are forecast to increase, particularly among women.

Some 20 older workers from a range of different life situations were recruited for qualitative interviews. We aimed to learn about people’s family roles, their work and money situation, their health, and experiences of ageing.

The study is being conducted by Shelley Mallett, Dina Bowman and Aaron Hart from the University of Melbourne and the Brotherhood of St Laurence.

This is one component of a larger Australian Research Council Linkage Project (LP160100467) entitled “Working longer, staying healthy and keeping productive”. This project comprises five studies, with each taking a different approach to informing policy development around older workers and their workplaces. The project brings together researchers from the Australian National University, the federal departments of Social Services and Employment, the Brotherhood of St Laurence, the University of Melbourne, Safe Work Australia and Queensland Treasury.

Contact: Dr Aaron Hart aaron.hart(at)

The Brotherhood of St Laurence (BSL) acknowledges and understands its obligations under the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and recognises that all children and young people have the right to be treated with respect and care, and to be safe from all forms of abuse. BSL has a zero tolerance towards child abuse.
Read the official statement signed by the Executive Director.

The Brotherhood recognises the harm that family violence causes and that freedom from violence is a basic human right.
We will support our staff, volunteers, clients and the community if they experience violence.

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The Brotherhood of St Laurence acknowledges and recognises the Traditional Owners of the land upon which we live and work, and we pay our respects to their Elders both past and present.

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