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Retirement age protests in France shed light on new retirement realities: Canadian experts

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Protests erupted in France this week against plans to raise the retirement age, with experts saying that people don’t want to defer their retirement any longer.

While the nationwide strikes have been unique to the situation in France, some experts say the events still underscore the fact that retirement as a general concept is changing, with people in Canada and elsewhere having to rely on themselves more than they ever have.

“A lot of times a country will move those ages forward because they feel they don’t have the resources to pay the pension obligations that they’ve set the system up for. And the idea that your country can’t afford to pay you is something that makes people very nervous and understandably so,” said Millie Gormely, a certified financial planner (CFP).

Gormely says it’s “wonderful” that Canada and a lot of other countries across the world have a social safety net, but “it can be taken away and things are going to change” — and they already are.

“I think retirement as a general concept is changing a lot. The idea of leaving school when you’re 19 or 20 years old, you go work in a factory, you stay there for 30 years, they…

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