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News & Events

The Number of Seniors is projected to dramatically increase in the next 10 years. Are we ready?

SIMCOE, ON, September 16, 2011

The Haldimand & Norfolk Counties Community Profile Report (2011), was just released today. The report examined population characteristics, socio-economic status, and priority populations.

“This type of demographic information is very important for Health Unit staff to use when designing public health programs and services that meet our local community needs.”- says, Jill Steen, Manager of Public Health, Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit

The report showed that the number of older adults aged 55 years and over is projected to substantially increase from 26,097 in 2000 to 45,210 in 2020, or 73.2%. Moreover, it is projected that the number of seniors dependent on people of working age for support will also increase. This may impact social security and pensions. This growth rate is attributed to the baby boom generation, as they begin to turn 65.

“As the baby boom generation is getting older, it is important to look at our programs and services to determine whether we are meeting the needs of our older adults. Our goal at the Health Unit is to provide high impact programs that address the need within our community, especially our priority populations.” – says Deanna White, Epidemiologist, Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit.

The report also showed that the number of children and youth aged 0 to 19 years is projected to fall from 29,818 in 2000 to 23,608 in 2020 or -20.8%. Unlike Ontario, it is estimated that the number of children and youth in Haldimand and Norfolk is expected to continue to decrease in later years. In 2036, it is estimated that there will be 23,052 children and youth, compared to 23,608 in 2020.

“As the number of children and youth decrease, in the future we will have to refocus and redirect our programs and services to the aging population.”- says Melanie Laundry, Program Coordinator, Family Health Team, Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit.

It was also found that over 45% of persons 25 to 64 years of age have high school education or less, 5.7% of all persons and 7.4% of children and youth live in poverty in Haldimand and Norfolk. Particularly alarming, the Ontario Works caseload has steadily increased over the last five years. The average monthly caseload dramatically increased from 972 cases in 2006 to 1,394 cases in 2010, or 43.6% increase.
Jodi Guilmette, Manager of the Haldimand & Norfolk Social Services Division, believes “that it will become increasingly important to understand the labour demands of our local employers to ensure that our Ontario Works recipients have the skills and abilities they will need to access jobs as they become available.”

The full report can be found on the Health Unit’s website at www.hnhu.org. If you have any questions or comments concerning the report or would like ahard copy, please do not hesitate to contact Deanna White, Epidemiologist, at (519) 426-6170, Ext. 3215,deanna.white@hnhu.orgor, Jill Steen, Manager, Public Health, Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit, at (519) 426-6170, Ext. 3218,jill.steen@hnhu.org.