Pensions, Privatization and Poverty: The Gendered Impact

Source: Claire Young, Canadian Journal of Women and the Law, Vol. 23, No. 2, 2011
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From the abstract:
This article focuses on the disparate impact of Canadian pension policy on women as compared to men, which in turn contributes to the poverty experienced by elderly women in retirement. The major contributing factor is the increasing privatization of the responsibility for economic security in Canada, with a preference for reliance on the private market or private family rather than on the state to provide for the welfare of its citizens. The article discusses the negative impact on women of issues such as the trend towards the establishment of defined contribution workplace pension plans rather than defined contributions plans, the increasing use of tax expenditures to encourage private retirement savings, and pension income splitting. The analysis takes place against the backdrop of the socio-economic realities of women’s lives and concludes that public pensions such as the Old Age Security pension and the Canada Pension Plan must be strengthened if women’s economic inequality in retirement is to be redressed.