Go get a job: the Intergenerational Report tells baby boomers to get back to work for the good of the nation 618



View Profile

Yesterday, the much awaited Intergenerational Report was released and it drew a lot of discussion and criticism. It created a snapshot of the next 40 years in Australia and what the growing ageing population will look like in 2055. But now that we, the Australian over 60s, are in our senior years, what does this report mean for us and why is it important?

In projections covered in the report, in 2055, our population will be 39.7 million and the average live expectancy will be around 95. And we’re already facing ballooning budget deficits and increased pressure on health services, aged care and the environment. The government have taken a good, hard look at how us seniors live and what changes can be made so that our country can continue to survive economically long after we’re gone.

But the news isn’t so good for our own grandchildren – they’ll be worse off than we were. The main issue that Joe Hockey talked about was the fact that so many older people do not work, particularly women. In his announcement of the report findings, he called for older Australians to join a “grey army” to boost work force participation. But are you willing to do that?

The report suggests that we have been living beyond our means for too long – the government spends over $100 million a day more than it collects. Do you agree? Are you living beyond your means?

Though, if we’re being encouraged to get back to work, where are the jobs? Joe Hockey finished off his speech yesterday by saying he had met a man who was 83 years old and worked at Bunnings. But does Joe think that only place we want to work is Bunnings?

Age and Disability Commissioner Susan Ryan spoke to ABC Newsradio yesterday after the report was released and said the clear fact is that we want to work longer if can get the right work.

Australian seniors in 2015 are living longer lives however other nations are better at getting older workers into jobs. She said, “We need to be reskilling workers with targeted training” and that our nation has a problem with wasting human capital. We have a big problem if employers won’t look at someone over 50 so in this, there’s a retraining opportunity, according to Ms Ryan. She suggested a skills checkpoint where if you’re 50, you can look at your job and think about whether you will stay for another 10 years. If not, you need to have resources that can help you find out what is possible for you, where to find jobs and training to do something you will enjoy for years to come. So, how can reskilling over 50s work if our government wants to stop spending money? Ms Ryan said “If people continue in work, they’re not drawing on resources. It’s well known that people who are employed are healthier, mentally and physically, which in turn pulls down health costs”.

“There is that deep seated idea that once you’re over 50, you’re over the hill and we don’t want to invest you or hire you or anything like that, she said. “We know that most people who are 50 now are going to live into their 90s and maybe to 100. What happens if you leave the workforce in your 50s and you die at 95? I mean it’s a terrible thought that you would be all those years without earned income and a lot of those years would be on the public purse. So we have to change that”. Do you agree?

We asked you if you think employers are open minded enough today and the overwhelming response is that they are not. Kim Hale said, “There are not enough jobs and, of course, if older people apply they are quickly culled in favour of younger (cheaper!) applicants”, and Jenny Goldberg said, “I heard over qualified so many times – what does that mean really? Oh that’s right, you are 60 and too old!”. Wendy France was forced to retire early: “I had been doing a lot of agency work, then the jobs ran out. The agency was giving the work to the younger ones – those with less experience. The agency said it wasn’t me, but the job situation at the time. Of course they said that. I retired because I couldn’t find work! Bosses need to be intelligent enough to value older workers!”. 

So what do you think? Should we get back to work for the good of our grandchildren? Should we be to blame? Is there enough work for over 60s?

Starts at 60 Writers

The Starts at 60 writers team seek out interesting topics and write them especially for you.

  1. They need to look at those people who have been on the dole for a long time first . My hubby was out of a job at 56 nobody wanted him he done a forklift course , worked in retail for years still no luck

  2. Does joe hockey live in the real world. ..?

    10 REPLY
    • He’s power drunk and it’s pickled his brain. He thinks the aged can’t vote his government out, that if he panders to the young and sets them against us that he will retain his power, that the young will vote him and his handouts to them in.
      A lot of the young won’t accept their parents being abused like this joe.

    • Def not!!! He should live a week in our shoes on our $$$ then see how he feels. Most of us worked one if not two jobs to support our family, perhaps jobs were more available but we never expected handouts of any kind and this is how we are treated. We also have our children values and morals,unlike a lot of today’s children and I am referring to smaller ones. They are very disrespectful at times, and it very frustrating that we take all the blame.

    • No, he doesn’t. He is estimated to be worth over $10 million.

  3. I’m 65 my back and legs are stuffed so how am l able to work. I know people my age who would like a job but no one will employ them!!!! Most of my generation started work at 15 so think they are entitled to retire at 65….. a lotvof us volunteer too.

    7 REPLY
    • Karen you are 100% right!! Im a cook noway i could lift the heavy pots now

      1 REPLY
      • hockey lives in a dream world…i have been a cook for many years..no way could i do it now..had 2 knees replaced..my body is worn out..would if i could !

    • I am in the same boat, my legs and back and neck are stuffed.. what does he want us to do? all get paper runs? because many of our jobs don’t exist anymore..

    • Gen x/y, HSC, gap year or 3, 4-6 year degree, o shesh that study capers hard, might have a gap year or three to lessen the stress, take up a job at 35 yrs there about tapping a keyboard, and there screaming cause there gotta put in another 35!!!, generalisation only!!

    • Yes agree I started at 15 educated myself. Just turned 60. And my boss said hope you not going after 65. Don’t want to carry people not many places want older people anyway. He needs to live in the real world.

    • And so we all get jobs and then get blamed for taking away jobs from the younger generation. Joe Hockey can get off his fat backside and do some real work himself.

  4. What about the young people who never work, they need a job to get t through to retirement. Where are you going to find all these jobs? Yes their will be lots of people who will be able to work longer. But who’s going to do all the volunteers work if baby boomers are all working to the grave?Government will have to support more Charities,We have worked hard to get what we had no low interest rates either. Pay as we go was the motto for most baby boomers. Now their children will be paying off he debt of the parents because on the the must have the latest and the best attitude of most people now.

    1 REPLY
    • Mike here-preciselyTrish, who will volounteer, ambulance officers,of which I believe in SA more than half are volounteers, meals on wheels, charity op shops, etc?

  5. Why do you think interest rates are down. Pensioners can’t afford to live so will have to go back to work so we can eat All of Joes mates on the north shore have enough money they don’t have to work. Live in the suburbs it’s live or die

  6. The Baby Boomers were the ones that propped up the economy and the country so why should we do so again because government was inept at keeping up what we built.

    1 REPLY
    • Elaine Costello the older generation laid the foundation for the Baby Boomers !!!!

  7. Sorry Joe, your mathematics are flawed in three ways. and assumes that every thing on the planet (eg technology) stands still. Think back 50 years ago and compare the giant strides in technology we have today.

  8. Do some real work Joe and chase the tax evaders , you know perfectly well that there is more lost to the country through tax evasion especially by BIG companies than the entire welfare bill. nice though,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *