Custom Search
Top Stories
Go to Site Index See "Top Stories" main page
NEWS RELEASE · 20th February 2013
Generation Squeeze
BC Budget Pits Retirees Against Younger Generations

In last week’s Throne Speech, the government committed to make life more affordable for younger generations by investing in child care.

Yesterday’s budget did the reverse, delivering almost no increase for young people. But it added a $1.5 billion increase in medical care spending over 2 years – spending which primarily benefits the generation of retirees.

The problem is - annual government spending per retiree is already around $45,000 in BC, compared to just $12,000 per British Columbian under age 45. The Generation Squeeze Campaign asks government to narrow the generational spending gap slightly by increasing expenditures on younger generations from $12,000 to $13,000 – a thousand dollars per young person.

“By further widening the governments’ generational spending gap,” Dr. Paul Kershaw observes “the Budget fails to address how BC is now the least affordable jurisdiction for young people in the country.” Kershaw is a UBC Professor and the Founder of the Generation Squeeze Campaign, which aims to make the generational spending gap a key issue in advance of the spring election.

The province has become unaffordable for young generations, reports Stephen Butz, CEO of the YMCA of Greater Vancouver, and a Gen Squeeze Campaign advisor. “BC young people suffer the largest reduction in household incomes of any province since the mid-1970s, along with the greatest increase in housing prices – up over 150 per cent.”

The BC Liberal and NDP parties have both said that the province cannot afford $10/day child care, which is key to narrowing the generational spending gap. “But building this program would only raise spending per young person to $12,500,” observes Anita Huberman, the CEO of the Surrey Board of Trade, and another advisor to the Gen Squeeze campaign. “This is affordable while still leaving spending on retirees around its current level,” she adds.

“Why is $1.5 billion unaffordable for $10/day child care when an extra $1.5 billion is affordable for medical care?” asks Kershaw. “Why do the two main rivals in the upcoming provincial election pursue campaign success on the backs of young people, pitting spending on parents and grandparents against investing in their kids and grandchildren?”

A network of partners support the Generation Squeeze Campaign ( to ensure younger generations have a chance. A chance to deal with lower wages, higher living costs, environmental change and an imbalance in government spending without compromising the family they have, or the family they want.

Comment by James Ippel on 27th February 2013
I am glad to hear that both the Liberals and the NDP have said that $10 a day daycare is not affordable in BC. It would possibly have a chance if the Federal Gov't would quit sending Quebec appoximately $15 BILLION in transfer payments every year. There they have $7 a day childcare because, we. the rest of Canada is paying for it.
On a more saure note: why should I raise someone elses children so they can go and work for a bigger home, a summer cottage, a power boat, winter vacations in warm climes, belong to the best Golf Clubs, ad nausem?
I spent 46+ years in the labour force, paid my dues, and should I expect medical asdsistance when I need it? You're damn right I do Dr. Kershaw.
Stephen Butz states that BC young people suffer the largest reduction in household incomes in any province sind the mid 70's and the greatest increase in housing prices. BooHoo. All the young people want to live in Vancouver, the most expensive city in the world to live in. They expect to walk into a job interview, be hired, and paid a 6 figure salary to strart. (no experience required)
Get real, go out into the remote areas of the province, get some life experience, and in your chosen field. Right now you want it all handed to you on a silver platter.

Grow up, get real.
Dr. Paul Kershaw in Terrace on Feb 25
Comment by Sasa Loggin on 20th February 2013
I am pleased to inform you that Dr. Paul Kershaw will be in Terrace on Monday, Feb 25th at 7 pm at the Elephant's Ear.

Paul is a very dynamic speaker and this is definitely not your usual lecture but rather an interactive evening, open to anyone interested in creating Canada for all generations.

This event is sponsored by Terrace Make Children First Network and Success by 6 NW. More info at