According to the Parliamentary Budget Officer, Kevin Page, Old Age Security is sustainable - despite what the Harper government is telling you.
Ottawa (24 May 2012) - The Parliamentary Budget Officer (PBO) Kevin Page has again succinctly contradicted the official line that Old Age Security (OAS) at age 65 is unsustainable.
In February 2012, Page issued a report on Federal Fiscal Sustainability and Elderly Benefits. He concluded that “You cannot argue the government has a fiscal sustainability problem." The report revealed that the government has manufactured a crisis particularly by not including the country's future revenue and the fact that the economy will grow over decades. The OAS burden will never be as heavy as the government suggests.
Page was quickly summoned to the Parliamentary Finance committee to respond to his findings. He remained firm and stood by his report.
Following his committee appearance, Page issued a follow up report, PBO Economic and Fiscal Outlook: Follow-up Report to the Standing Committee on Finance, to respond to specific questions he could not answer at the committee due to time constraints.
In this follow up report, Page further confirms OAS's strength saying, "While there may be other policy rationales for changing the OAS program, PBO’s analysis indicates that the program itself is financially sustainable over the long term within the Government’s current fiscal structure, given projected demographic and economic trends."
As it stands, maximum combined benefits from OAS and GIS fall below the poverty line. Since there appears to be no crisis in the long-term sustainability of OAS, the National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) continues to press for actual improvements in the system. With private pension plans continuing to fail to produce secure retirement security, Canadians are relying on OAS and the related programs Guaranteed Income Security and the Allowance more as a major part of their income.
The National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) is one of Canada's largest labour organizations with over 340,000 members. Our mission is to improve the lives of working families and to build a stronger Canada by ensuring our common wealth is used for the common good. NUPGE