Canada goes grey: Boomers’ new strain on pensions, health care
Canada is slowly but surely becoming a nation of older people. The demographic trends were confirmed Tuesday, as Statistics Canada released the latest batch of data from its 2011 census. Back in 1971, eight per cent of us were 65 and older.
Last year, as the first wave of baby boomers reached the milestone, the proportion was 14.8 per cent. That’s nearly 5 million seniors (4,945,060, to be exact) out of 33.5 million Canadians.
There were 5,825 Canadians who have reached their 100th birthday — centenarians — and the number is projected to steadily rise to a whopping 78,300 in the next 50 years.
All the while — and here’s a surprise — there’s a mini-baby boom happening in this country. The population of children aged four and under increased 11 per cent between 2006 and 2011 — the highest growth rate for this age group since the late 1950s and early 1960s.