New census data set to confirm growing number of seniors
Larry Steele will officially become a senior in December when he turns 65, but he says age is just a number.
In fact, Steele spent her day cycling near the Halifax Common on Monday.
“We’re all getting older, I guess,” he said with a laugh. “So, fair enough.”
This is an observation that you can also make in a broader sense.
Census data due this week will reveal how many Canadians have aged since the last count in 2016.
At the time, data revealed for the first time that people over the age of 65 outnumbered Canadians aged 14 and under.
The new figures are expected to further widen the gap, which will have implications for all.
“People are watching the size and growth of our workforce. It’s slowing down with an older population,” said Doug Norris, chief demographer and senior vice-president of Environics, Ottawa.
“And certainly the impacts on the health care system, the need for long-term care, are all factors that I think we’re going to see even more pronounced in the years to come.”
Interestingly, Norris – who has earned the nickname “Mr. Census” after 30 years with Statistics Canada, says we may not be noticing the trend as much in our region because the population of the Maritimes is already older. However, defenders say we haven’t done much about it.
“Governments still don’t get it,” said Bill Van Gorder, policy director of the Canadian Association of Retired Persons, or CARP.
“During an election, all the parties look after senior citizens and talk about them, but we don’t see any results after they are elected,” he said.
Census data is considered vital to everyone from policymakers to private businesses, but we’ve been hearing about some of the issues for years.
“Certainly at the moment I am very concerned about the number of people who do not have a family doctor. That, I find that quite frightening,” said Nini Corra, 77, adding that her husband is among them. after his doctor retired.
Steele says he’s thought about the future.
“I think it’s good to have a lot of home care, try to do everything you can to keep people at home.”