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The Employers Forum on Age, whose members include Barclays and Shell, has advised managers not to view age discrimination as something that only affects workers over 50.
"I anticipate that the first claims will come from the younger end of the workforce," said Sam Mercer, director of the EFA. Attempts by employers to promote a positive image of older workers as loyal and conscientious often implied younger people were the opposite, he said.
A survey by law firm Eversheds of more than 2,000 people found that almost 60% of 16 to 24-year-olds felt they were unfairly treated because of their age or lack of experience.