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Gender, work and retirement for the baby-boomer cohort in Canada

TitleGender, work and retirement for the baby-boomer cohort in Canada
Year of Publication2016
AuthorsDuquette, H. C.
Date PublishedAugust
UniversityConcordia University
CityMontréal, QC
Keywordsbaby-boomer, canada, gender, retirement

Historically, women have had fewer opportunities than men to contribute to the labour force mainly due to their domestic labour, which place women at a disadvantage during their retirement years compared to men. The aim of this study is to evaluate gender differences while also taking other factors into account in planning for retirement, age at retirement, returning to work after retirement, and the current socio-economic situation of retirees. The 2009 Canadian Community Health Survey - Healthy Aging is the source of data used, and this confidential master file was accessed in a secure location, the Research Data Centre (the Quebec Interuniversity Center for Social Statistics, QICSS). Results can be summarized along two main themes. First, they show that gender roles do intersect with the process and the decision-making process of retirement. Level of education and financial situation are intertwined with gender roles such that the socio-economic situation of retirees is largely determined by their marital status and level of education, and retired females are still at a financial disadvantage due to their more limited exposure to the labour force. Moreover, the greater attachment to the labour force for men is apparent as they are more likely to retire later and return to work. Second, the study provides clear evidence that the process of retirement is complex, can vary according to many factors and can also follow a non-linear trend that must be better acknowledged in work about retirement issues. For example, some individuals have no plans to retire either because they cannot afford it or want to continue to work and, in other situations, retirement is not a single life event because some return to work.

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