A better Canada Pension Plan is possible

After a lifetime of hard work, no one should have to struggle just to make ends meet.

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For some of us, retirement seems light years into the future. For others, it’s already at our front door. Whether it’s you, your parents or your grandparents – chances are you know someone who is struggling in retirement.

With 600,000 Canadian seniors living in poverty, and 11 million workers lacking a workplace pension, retirement is something all of us need to start thinking about today. Even for employees with workplace pension plans, affording a modest retirement can be a struggle.

Most working Canadians are part of the Canada Pension Plan (CPP), a universal public pension plan that provides financial security for millions of workers.

No matter where you worked, the CPP provides a monthly benefit to retired Canadians. The CPP is a safe and secure plan Canadians can rely on at the end of their working life.

Fast Facts

1. Many Canadians are finding it difficult to put money aside for retirement and are fearful for their future

2. Almost two-thirds of the Canadian workforce don’t have a pension plan through work

3. Approximately 600,000 Canadian seniors are living with a low income, with single seniors at highest risk of living below the poverty line

4. An expansion of the CPP would increase future benefits in a way that’s affordable for everyone

5. Currently, the average benefit a retired worker receives is $550 per month, the maximum is $1,200 per month

6. Virtually all Canadian employees, and all self-employed Canadians, are part of the Canada Pension Plan

7. The CPP is portable, meaning it follows workers from job-to-job anywhere in the country

8. The CPP is safe, secure and protected against the ups and downs of the stock markets

9. CPP funds are accessible as early as age 60 (although monthly cheques are 36 per cent less), or as late as age 70 (allowing one to receive around 42 per cent more per month)

10. For about the cost of a cup of coffee and a donut a day, the average worker could double their CPP benefits at retirement

Raise Awareness

Send an email to a Change Maker in your area and let them know you want a better plan for all.

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Why unions care

Canada’s unions have always worked to make Canada a better place to work and live. We’ve advocated for and won changes that benefit all workers today, such as minimum wages, overtime pay, workplace safety standards, maternity and parental leave, vacation pay, and protection from discrimination and harassment.

We believe we all have a responsibility to work to end seniors’ poverty. We know that pensions are crucially important, not just to the well-being of workers and their families, but to the economic health and vitality of our cities and communities too. 

That’s why we’ve supported the Canada Pension Plan since the debate that led to its creation more than 50 years ago. All Canadians, not just union members, deserve a stable and secure pension.