Over 40,000 people of retirement age in N.L. looking for work, says seniors’ advocate

Over 40,000 people of retirement age in N.L. looking for work, says seniors’ advocate
Seniors’ advocate and St John’s Board of Trade say older workers could help struggling workforce. (Lindsay Bird/CBC)

About 43,000 people of retirement age in Newfoundland and Labrador are looking for work, according to the province’s seniors advocate Susan Walsh, who has partnered with the St. John’s Board of Trade.

This number comes from Walsh’s community engagement sessions and research conducted by the Board of Trade. People over 55 who have expressed an interest in gainful employment have different reasons, she says: some just want to work, others are struggling with the rising cost of living.

“Some seniors have a good education. Others have great work ethics. They just want to give something back. They want to keep working,” Walsh told CBC News.

“Of course there is also the concern here that we have some seniors who have to work. I heard from many consultations and phone calls that there are seniors who are currently struggling with the rising cost of living and “so some have to work.”

AnnMarie Boudreau, CEO of St John’s Board of Trade, said the data was collected over a two-year period for a research paper the organization put together to examine the barriers and opportunities faced by older workers – defined as 55 and older. face as they are actively seeking or maintaining employment in NL. The investigation covered the entire province, not just the St. John’s area.

Boudreau said the Chamber of Commerce has examined in depth some of the motivators for continuing to work after retirement.

She echoed Walsh’s comment.

A woman stands at a podium with three microphones.  The background is a beige wall.
Seniors’ advocate Susan Walsh says some seniors just can’t afford to stop working. (Terry Roberts/CBC)

“Some people at 55 are just not ready. They think society is designed to have this retirement age,” Boudreau said.

“Life is even more expensive today [more] than just a few years ago. So there is a need when this opportunity arises to maintain their position in the workforce, continue to make money and have that financial stability. It’s a reality for people.”

Walsh said retirees aren’t necessarily looking for another nine-to-five job, but are interested in flexible, part-time and remote work.

She said employers facing ongoing labor law challenges could benefit from the more than 43,000 people who may be interested in helping.

“This is a pool of people who we know are very reliable, have a history of good work ethics and have a lot of training and knowledge,” Walsh said.

“There’s a lot of great work to build on there and a lot of great partnerships.”

Read more articles from CBC Newfoundland and Labrador

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