We’ve heard a lot about our aging population and how the ratio of people over 65 is increasing compared to those between 20 and 64. This is usually associated with extra burdens on our society since older people tend to draw more out of the system than working individuals. However, people under 20 also draw more from the system than they put in, and the percentage of people in this demographic has declined.
According to the Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development, the percentage of the population between 20 and 64 was 55% in 1950, rose to 63% in 2010 and is projected to decline to 54% by 2050. In 1950, 8% of the population was over 65. That rose to 14% in 2010 and is expected to climb to 26% in 2050. The ratio of young people has been dropping off a cliff. In 1950, 38% of Canada was under 20 years old. This declined to 23% in 2010 and is expected to drop more to 21% by 2050. So what’s this mean? After 100 years, there likely won’t be a whole lot of change to the ratio of people defined as working age in Canada (and certainly there will be more working women than there were in 1950). Plus, who knows what the working age will be in 2050.