This is the major crisis of our time - and the Harper Reformatories won't even address it appropriately. Why? Because they've squandered away surpluses on "toys" and partisan advertising...
Here's Ralph Goodale's take:
PENSION CRISIS LOOMS STEADILY LARGER
On television last week, a former Nortel employee, now suffering from Parkinson’s disease, described how her long-term disability pension from Nortel will expire at the end of this year – due to the company’s massive bankruptcy. Once it’s gone, she’ll be literally “out on the street”.
Around Remembrance Day, Canadian veterans – both old and young – held protest rallies across the country to highlight major weaknesses in the pensions and support services provided to returning military personnel.
This past weekend, pension professionals from Saskatchewan made a presentation about the deliberate discrimination in federal tax rules that undermine the “direct contribution – variable pension benefit” plans that are particularly prominent in Saskatchewan.
Stock markets continue to fluctuate at levels well below previous expectations, resulting in RRSP and TFSP values that are down drastically from what investors had planned for, just a few years ago.
Fully one-third of Canadians have no retirement savings at all, beyond the government-mandated CPP, OAS and GIS. And another one-third have some additional savings, but nothing sufficient to maintain their standard of living.
These are a few of the growing and glaring issues around Canada’s pension system.
For nearly two years now, the Harper government has been promising major pension improvements, but to date they’ve accomplished nothing of consequence. Time is rapidly slipping by as pension problems of all kinds get worse.
The hard reality is that a majority of Canadians today cannot look forward to a secure retirement based on the public and private pension plans now in effect and the rules governing personal savings.
With a huge number of “Baby Boomers” heading toward retirement beginning next year, the gross inadequacy of pensions and savings is nothing short of a crisis – a ticking time-bomb about to explode.
This must become a national priority for decisive action in 2011!