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Increasing inclusiveness for women, youth and seniors in Canada

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  • Andrew Barker

Abstract

Women, youth and seniors face barriers to economic inclusion in Canada, with considerable scope to improve their labour market outcomes. There has been no progress in shrinking the gender employment gap since 2009, and women, particularly mothers, continue to earn significantly less than men, in part due to a large gap in unpaid childcare responsibilities. Outside the province of Québec, low (but increasing) rates of government support for childcare should be expanded considerably, as should fathers’ low take-up of parental leave. Skills development should be prioritised to arrest declining skills among youth and weak wage growth among young males with low educational attainment. Fragmented labour market information needs to be consolidated to address wage penalties associated with the widespread prevalence of qualifications mismatch. Growth in old-age poverty should be tackled through further increases in basic pension payments over time. Linking changes in the age of eligibility for public pensions to life expectancy would boost growth by increasing employment of older Canadians still willing and able to work. For all three groups, well-targeted expansions of in-work tax benefits and active labour market spending have the potential to increase employment.

Suggested Citation

  • Andrew Barker, 2018. "Increasing inclusiveness for women, youth and seniors in Canada," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 1519, OECD Publishing.
  • Handle: RePEc:oec:ecoaaa:1519-en
    DOI: 10.1787/83cb8b8d-en
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    File URL: https://doi.org/10.1787/83cb8b8d-en
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    apprenticeship; Canada; child care; employment; gender equality; inclusiveness; labour force participation; labour market participation of seniors; life-long learning; long-term care; parental leave; pensions;

    JEL classification:

    • H55 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Social Security and Public Pensions
    • I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs
    • J26 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Retirement; Retirement Policies
    • J40 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - General

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