November 14, 2018

By VANDA DOBRITOIU

For those of you hoping to get a job shortly after graduation, don’t get your hopes up just yet.
Studies show that since 2008, people 50 years of age are deciding to work 16 more years, which is 3.5 years longer than workers in the mid-1990. The financial crisis in 2008 encouraged older people close to retirement to keep their jobs for as long as possible. This is an impediment for young adults graduating college and university because there will be fewer jobs available.
After being in her field of work for 35 years, Adina Lebo has no plans of retiring.
“I have accumulated all kinds of skills from communications to event planning to strategy and organizational startups, so I’m continuing to do that. I see doing that for the foreseeable future just because I don’t know what I would do if I retired,” Lebo, 61, said in an Oct. 26 article in the Waterloo Region Record.
Although pension plans are often generous, adults closer to retirement are afraid of becoming obsolete. While they once used to be employee of the month, every month, now they find themselves at home in front of the television seven days a week.
It is unnerving and they feel out of place, especially when their children, family and friends are busy at work every day.
Statistics Canada researcher Diane Galarneau said she doesn’t have any information on why people remain at work.
In a report she wrote with Yves Carriere, she mentioned that “several factors are at play, such as individuals are living longer and in good health and there are greater opportunities for boomers since the cohort following them into the labour market is smaller.”
People working longer is, of course, a roadblock for students fresh out of school. With older people on the job, there is no room for the younger generation which is coming out of an expensive education with a great deal of debt strapped to their backs.
In 2009, all provinces, except New Brunswick, got rid of laws that allowed employers to get rid of workers once they turned 65.
Perhaps the provinces should introduce new legislation that brings back mandatory retirement, say at age 70, for professions that have lots of qualified candidates but few jobs.

The views herein represent the position of the newspaper, not necessarily the author.

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