OTTAWA – A day after the federal Liberals' economic advisory council recommended raising the age of retirement eligibility, the government is turning the idea down flat.
The council advised the government on Monday to raise the age at which workers can collect old age security and Canada Pension Plan benefits in order to keep people in the work force longer.
But Social Development Minister Jean-Yves Duclos says the government will stick to its election promise to set the age at 65 – a reversal of the previous Conservative government's plan to raise the age to 67.
Duclos says moving back to age 67 would throw vulnerable seniors into poverty.
But he also says the government is looking at other incentives to keep workers in the work force longer, if they're able and willing.
The growth council argued that raising the eligibility age would boost labour participation and add $56 billion to the country's gross domestic product.
``We are not going to change that because we believe it's important to protect our vulnerable seniors, those who find it impossible, for all sorts of reasons, to continue their labour force participation,'' Duclos said after a cabinet meeting Tuesday morning.
``And second, we're going to look very hard into ways to improve the incentives that other workers who are able and willing to continue their labour force participation can receive and benefit from in order to continue growing our economy.''
Recommendations from the growth council have had a lot of sway with policy makers in the past, and are expected to heavily influence the upcoming budget.