B.C. ranked worst among provinces for supporting seniors: Advocate
VICTORIA — B.C.’s seniors advocate slammed the provincial government Thursday for providing the lowest level of financial support for seniors of any provinces as a report shows people 65 and older are drowning under the weight of rising costs.
Isobel Mackenzie’s report found that federal Old Age Security and Canada Pension Plan payments seniors receive have not increased enough to cover rising costs of groceries, dental care, home care, house repairs and other essentials.
“B.C. seniors are not getting the same level of financial support and services as seniors in other provinces and territories across the country,” Mackenzie said at a news conference in Victoria.
Mackenzie said 45 per cent of the province’s one million seniors live on less than the minimum wage and 25 per cent live on less than $21,000 a year, compared to the $51,170 annual income received by the working-age population. She noted the minimum wage has increased 40 per cent in the last five years but pension incomes have only risen 14 per cent in that period.