In 1970, only 8% of Australians were older than 64. In 2050, it’ll be almost a quarter. Pension age is increasing, but this still lags behind growing life expectancy.
According to the GAP report on Productive Ageing, two million older people are willing and able to work – in fact, their underemployment currently costs Australia $10.8 billion a year in lost GDP. An increase of 3% of workplace participation in people over the age of 55 would increase GDP by $33 billion, while 5% growth would see 750,000 benefit recipients become tax payers and give the economy a $48 billion boost.
So why aren’t we employing Australia’s mature citizens? Ageist prejudices persist, as a fixed retirement age labels people who reach it as unemployable. Besides affecting job prospects, ageism can have a profound impact on someone’s confidence, financial situation and quality of life.
That we are living longer, healthy lives shouldn’t be a threat – it is an opportunity to be seized. For the next two months, we will be exploring the many facets of productive ageing. Please contact Svetlana at email@example.com to share your story, opinion or blog idea.
- Activating health through community enterprise – by Russ Grayson
- The impact of population ageing and immigration on the Australian housing market – by George Kudrna
- Too many candles on the birthday cake? – by Caroline Howe
- The world of work is changing – what hopes for ‘productive ageing’? – by Veronica Sheen
- Our superannuation system is ageing – reform is inevitable – by David Thorp
- Australian seniors living below the poverty line – by Jantje Lezius
- In the modern workplace, age 50 is considered old – by Jenny Brice
- Working and retiring under the new NSW Ageing Strategy – by Helen Rogers
- Ageing as a time of possibility, opportunity and influence – by Lisa Langley
- The right home, at the right time, the right place, and the right cost – by Abby Bloom
- Measuring productivity and the benefits of interventions for osteoarthritis – by Deborah Schofield