CARP urges “hands off” strategy so seniors can gain better control of their savings and their lives

National Securities Regulator and Enforcement Agency Support the establishment of a national securities regulator and investor protection and enforcement agency. For smaller investors (especially retirees hit hard by the market turbulence), enforcing market regulations is more important than one national regulator or several provincial ones. Our members feel helpless when they take advice and lose all their savings.

Universal Pension Plan Implement a universal supplementary pension plan for those without any retirement savings. This will not entail major government spending since it is funded by employer and employee contributions.

CARP also suggested ways to provide relief for low-income seniors, including increases to the level of Old Age Security [OAS] and Guaranteed Income Supplement [GIS] payments to bring guaranteed income to at least the Low Income Cut Offs [LICO] that Statistics Canada uses.

In 2007, LICO ranged from $15,000 to $22,000 depending on the community size whereas the maximum OAS and GIS totals $14,033.64. Even with provincial supplements, these income support levels are inadequate for the estimated 260,000 Canadian seniors living in poverty.

Encourage Work to Supplement GIS the recent increase to the amount of earnings permitted before eroding GIS entitlements allows people to contribute to their own retirement security and should be increased further to bring total income to at least LICO.

To support older workers who need to remain on the job, CARP called for the elimination of mandatory retirement, and other barriers, government programs to help older workers to stay employed, and help employers to keep older workers. And on the health front, CARP raised the issues of family caregiver support and pharmacare.

These recommendations do not require significant net expenditure of public funds, says Eng. Instead, they require the investment of political capital directed to this growing and hard hit sector of the population who vote in far greater numbers than any other segment of the population.

To see a copy of the full brief, Click here

CARP is a national, non-partisan, non-profit organization committed to advocating for a New Vision of Aging for Canada, social change that will bring financial security, equitable access to health care and freedom from discrimination. CARP seeks to ensure that the marketplace serves the needs and expectations of our generation and provides value-added benefits, products and services to our members. Through our network of chapters across Canada, CARP is dedicated to building a sense of community and shared values among our members in support of CARPs mission.

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For further information, please contact:

Pam Maher 416.363.2277 x. 235 Communications coordinator

Anne Gravel 416.363.2277 x. 230 Researcher, Policy Development


Susan Eng
Vice President Advocacy
CARP, A New Vision of Aging for Canada
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