Percentage of seniors in Canada continues to rise

first_imgTap your inner circle for new clients How to avoid abuse by PoAs for property Ontario introduces home improvement tax credit for seniors for 2021 According to the results of the 2016 census, which were released Wednesday by Statistics Canada, the past five years (2011 to 2016) has witnessed the largest increase in the proportion of seniors in the Canadian population since Confederation. “This acceleration of population aging is the result of the first baby boomers reaching the age of 65,” StatsCan says. Over the past five years, the overall population has grown by 5% in Canada, but the senior population has swelled by 20%, StatsCan reports. The fastest-growing segment of the population is Canadians that have reached 100 years of age, up 41.3%, amid the ongoing improvement in life expectancy. One of the results of these trends is that there are now, for the first time, more seniors (5.9 million) than there are children (5.8 million under 14 years old) in Canada. StatsCan says that the increase in the proportion of seniors is “a clear sign that Canada’s population is aging at a faster pace.” The working age population (15 to 64 year olds) now represents 66.5% of the total population, down from 68.5% in 2011. “Many aspects of Canadian society are being shaped by the fact that the first baby boomers turned 65 in 2011 and many of them have now left the labour market. More Canadians are receiving an old age pension and are seeking more health care and services. Meanwhile, proportionately fewer people are working and paying income tax,” StatsCan points out. “In addition to the baby boomers getting older, these lasting changes are also due to two other trends that will likely continue in the future. The increasing life expectancy of Canadians is gradually bringing the number and proportion of seniors upward, while continuous low fertility rates since the 1970s limit the number of children and drives down their share in the overall population,” StatsCan says. While immigration has helped drive overall population growth, it hasn’t slowed the population aging, StatsCan notes, as “most immigrants arriving in Canada are in their thirties and grow older here in Canada.” StatsCan says that its population projections indicate that the difference between the number of seniors and children is expected to increase in the years ahead. By 2031, 23% of the population could be 65 or older, while children would likely remain at around 16%, and the share of the working population would continue to decrease. By 2061, there could be 12 million seniors and fewer than 8 million children, it says. StatsCan notes that the provinces in Eastern Canada have older populations on average, while Western and Northern Canada have younger populations. In particular, the Atlantic provinces have seen a sharp decline in the number of 15 to 64 year olds, and a strong increase in the number of seniors, amid “low fertility, low immigration levels and migratory losses to other regions of Canada.” The proportion of seniors in Quebec is also above the national average at 18.3%, whereas the proportions of children and seniors are almost equal in Ontario. In the Prairies, there are more children than seniors, and more millennials than baby boomers, StatsCan notes; citing “higher fertility and immigration, and in the case of Alberta, the migration of people from other provinces, often drawn by the booming labour market.” StatsCan also says that population aging was slower in large urban centres than in other regions, although the population distribution varies greatly from city to city. For instance, Calgary had the lowest proportion of seniors (11.0%) in 2016 and one of the highest proportions of children (18.8%) and 15 to 64 year olds (70.2%). Photo copyright: stockbroker/123RF Facebook LinkedIn Twitter Seniors now outnumber children in Canada, the latest census data reveals, highlighting the country’s aging population and the critical economic and retirement policy challenges in the years ahead. James Langton OSC names members of Seniors Expert Advisory Committee Keywords Seniors Share this article and your comments with peers on social media Related newslast_img read more