Nuts To NATS

Lindsey
By Lindsey Last edited 113 months ago
Nuts To NATS

CAAFeb09.jpg
Where NATS used to live, now the Civil Aviation Authority building by Michael Wailes via the Londonist Flickrpool.
If you're thinking about a change of career or have recently been made redundant, whether from the city or Woolworths, you're going to need to be creative about your options to thrive in the current recruitment market. Thinking creatively about your options will be key. Some jobs will necessarily be no nos. Training from scratch to be a professional ballet dancer, for instance, is probably not going to be a viable career option. Becoming a trainee air traffic controller, however, might be an exciting and challenging idea and change of lifestyle, as long as you have 5 GCSEs, can see properly and posess natural aptitude (we're wondering if a lot of DS Lite brain training and video games, might help.)

But the National Air Traffic Services impose an age limit for trainees and it's 35. Suggesting that post 35, it's all downhill for mental dexterity and you're not worth training for this, admittedly, most stressful and important of jobs. Frankly, you're past it (gulp). For the first time, this rule has been challenged and unsurprisingly, NATS have been found guilty of age discrimination, specifically in the case of rejecting a 50 year old, eligible in every other way, London man. In defence of themselves, they're claiming that it's a sensible upper limit for maintaining the safety of the service and making training value for money. NATS have retreated into their Swanwick control centre corner to consider their next steps.

While we're not unsypathetic to claims that performance declines with advancing age (where did we leave our keys?) our 30 something Londonistas certainly aren't ready to be branded not worth training just yet, although our attention deficit problems, augmented by daily RSS feeds, Facebook watching and attempts to Twitter may well disqualify us on other grounds.

Last Updated 27 February 2009