Of all the economic items the EU countries have on their collective plate these days, why not briefly take a look at aging population as one of the most obvious underlining factors that is challenging its social and economic development. This won’t be a recital of statistics, but it is well documented that numbers in the “aging of Europe” are quite significant.
How admirable an example it is then, that the European Centre for Social Welfare Policy and Research has at least advocated,(quietly, as its work may not be broadly known), for developing policy built on what they call “solidarity between generations”. As per their report the challenges for this policy centre around two inter-related areas –
one, financial sustainability of public welfare systems; and two, that these systems still provide acceptable incomes for retirement and necessary heath and social care for people in old age.
The European Centre policy brief (July 2010) is a tight read that could well serve as a great platform for the same conversation here in Canada and elsewhere. Now 2013, the relevance of this has not diminished, considering this report is built on work done in the mid 1990’s.
Even still, one of the main outcomes from the EU Centre survey that led to the report was that “different generations do not easily agree” on what the best solutions are for everyone’s benefit. But the more openly we argue and discuss the perspectives together, the sooner the revolution will come. Intergenerational Solidarity. Imagine that.