The sunset clause: When should you stop working?

Modern careers are open-ended. It’s time Ottawa caught up to reality.

“Freedom 55” was a catchy slogan — but did it ever reflect the real world? Statistics Canada’s answer seems to be a resounding ‘no’.

In 2011, 35 per cent of Canadians aged 55 or older were working, up from 33 per cent in 2006. The average retirement age, meanwhile, increased slightly over the same period, from 62 to 63.

These trends represent nothing new: Between 2003 and 2013, the number of people aged 65 to 69 who were still working tripled, while the number aged 70 and over still in the labour force doubled. Overall, among Canadians aged 65 or older, 7.5 per cent of Canadians were still working in 2001, compared to 12.5 per cent in 2015.

But as Finance Minister Bill Morneau and his provincial counterparts met in Vancouver to discuss expanding the Canada Pension Plan, no one was talking about raising the official retirement age. The previous Conservative government did, sort of: It voted to increase the age of eligibility for Old Age Security from 65 to 67, over six years, as of 2023. In the last election campaign, the Liberals promised to reverse that decision if they formed government — which they promptly did in their first budget, to the cheers of seniors’ groups such as CARP and the chagrin of taxpayers’ groups such as the Canadian Taxpayers’ Federation.

Read the full article on iPolitics.

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