THE PROBLEM OF ANAGEING POPULATIONIN SINGAPOREThe Silver Generation(Chapt 2: Governance – Case Study)
Lesson Agenda• By the end of the lesson, you would be able to: • Appreciate the problems that come with an ageing society • Analyse the measures taken by the Singapore government to soften the impact of ageing • Practice a source based question, making use of the Basic Skill approach
What is an ageing society?•An ageing society is one in which 14% or more of its population is aged 65years and above. (United Nations’ definition of Ageing)
Why is the population ageing?• Low birth rates and an ageing population are issues that developed countries are facing. Singapore’s population will age rapidly over the next 30 years until 2030 (F)• This is due to three main factors: • The post-war baby boom • Declining birth-rates means that Singapore has a higher proportion of people aged 40 and 60years. • Singaporeans are living longer than before because of improvements in health and nutrition.
Why is the population ageing?First reason - Post-War Baby boom: • After the war, there was hope that there would be a long period of peace. This lead to people starting families and having many children. • Children born to parents just after WW II are now between 40 and 60 years of age. • By 2030, these Singaporeans will be among those aged 65 years and above.
Why is the population ageing?• Second reason – Declining birth rates: • Birth rate declining since 1970s. Proportion of young people in Society going down. • This was due to success of population control measures that were in place at the start of the 1970’s. • With declining birth rates, the proportion of young people in the population is shrinking, while the proportion of senior citizens is increasing.
Why is the population ageing?• Third Reason – Longer Life-expectancy: • Singaporeans are living longer that ever before. This is because of improvements in health and nutrition. • Singaporeans too have access to better quality and highly advanced medical procedures and equipment. • This increase in healthcare provision is linked to rising standards of living and technological developments in the health care sector.
Impacts of an Ageing Society• Impact 1: Demand for Health Care and Social Services • As a person ages, his need for healthcare and social services increases. • Elderly are more prone to diseases and medical conditions. Treatments are quite costly and this raises the costs of healthcare. • This raises the standard of living in Singapore and reduces the amount of money Singaporeans have to spend on themselves.
Impacts of an Ageing Population• Impact 2: Strain on Working Population • As the populations grow older, financial resources are required to help support senior citizens. • Taxes need to be collected from working people to pay for these services. • Decreasing birth rate means that there are fewer working people. There are less working adults able to pay taxes and this means they have to pay more taxes.
Impacts of an Ageing Population• Impact 3: Reduction in Competitiveness • Older populations are less active and physically fit compared to younger populations. • Productivity declines. There is less output per worker. This reduces Singapore’s competitiveness as MNCs may pull out of Singapore. • They may set up in countries where there is a larger workforce.
Impacts of an Ageing Population• Impact 4: Smaller Security Forces• Smaller number of young people to serve national service and in the pool of reservists.• These declining birth rates will have an impact on the overall defence strategy in Singapore. Singapore now has to turn to technology to make up for less numbers of soldiers.
Buzz Break 1http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kyEZII_MJDwWhy do you think the producers of the video,developed the video?What is the message of the video 12
an asset to family – looking after childrenmentors for young in welfare organisationsadvisors in government organisationscontribute to economy by extending careercontribute to economy by taking uppart-time jobs ?increase in demand for goods – senior citizens would bring about new demands 13
Individuals Familyshould take should care care for elderly Many Helping Hands ApproachCommunity should Government help should support ? 14
1. Individual Responsibilitya. prepare for old age: - pre-retirement talks - proper diet and regular exercise - bonds with more family ties - regular medical check-ups2. Family Care- take care of elderly family member - make house safe for the elderly ? - make elderly feel wanted by seeking opinions - be understanding and patient towards elderly 15
3. Community Help- community organizations could help - social and emotional support eg counseling, get members to talk to elderly - health care and social services eg health check-ups of elderly eg recreational activities for elderly 16
4. Government Support- Tribunal for the Maintenance of Parents - court helps to seek support from children- Central Provident Fund (CPF) - monthly sum of money from Retirement Account- Tax Relief - tax relief for taking care of parents, grandparents, great grandparents- Public Housing Schemes - housing grant for purchase of flat near parents’ flat 17
Individuals Familyshould take should care care for elderly Many Helping Hands ApproachCommunity should Government should help support 18
Imagine what your life may be like at age 65. Who wouldbe looking after you? What activities would you beparticipating in? Chances are, you would be looked after by your children. Those who are unmarried would have to rely on social workers and other family members for love and care. Activities you participate may be different from those of the present senior citizens due to differences in generation. However, health and physical constraints still have to be considered in choosing the activities. BACK 19
Why would it be a disaster if companies and youngworkers were taxed heavily? Cost of living would increase. This might lead to people deciding to leave the country and work elsewhere. The economy would therefore be badly affected. BACK 20
How do you think Singapore’s way of caring for its seniorcitizens can contribute to the process of nation building? Senior citizens being Singaporeans should be supported by their own citizens. Such bonding is important as we cannot rely on others for our survival. No one owes us a living and it is important that we care and support one another. BACK 21
Nowadays, it is quite common for children to move outof their parents’ homes when they marry. Suggest howthese children can continue to show their love andconcern for their aged parents. Visit their parents regularly / make it a point to prepare something the parents like when they visit / gather together as a family / go for a outing with parents / share and seek opinion of parents / financially support parents / listen and be patient with parents BACK 22
What do you think would be the mainsource of income for Singapore’s futuresenior citizens? Insurance, CPF, savings in banks BACK 23
Imagine that you are 65 years old and looking for a job.What kind of jobs would you be interested in?What can you do to ensure that companies would wantto employ you when you are 65 years old? Security / social work / couselling / teaching etc We have to keep ourselves updated and go for frequent training. BACK 24
Inference With Purpose I S EWhat is the key idea the cartoonist is trying to deliver? 25
Source G: A cartoonist’s illustration, titled “Noretirement age in Singapore”, 28 July 2010
Question: What is the message of this cartoon?
Step 1 : Identify the Characters Who are they? What are they doing? Skeleton = the worker Working very hard until his last breath (Because he worked until he has turned into bones) Employer Is very impressed with his workers effort Government Government is very happy because his policy of getting older workers to work beyond retirement is working
One Inference with Message• The source tells me that the government and employers in Singapore are keen to encourage older workers to work past their retirement age• I know this because they are very impressed with the efforts of the “worker” represented by the skeleton who is still holding a broom even though he has no more life in him.• The cartoonist is trying to show the negative aspect of working past the retirement age. By drawing a skeleton to represent older workers he is trying to make people aware that older workers should not be forced to work so hard just to support themselves.• He is very critical of the policy of lifelong employment if there are no limits to how long a person can work.
Lesson Recap• What is the definition of an ageing society?• What are the reasons for ageing populations?• Name 3 impacts of Ageing populations• List the steps when covering Inference with Purpose Questions.