OTTAWA, February 19, 2013, (LifeSiteNews.com) – To celebrate family day in Ontario, a national marriage and family think tank has released a new report that calls on Canadian families to have more kids in order to avoid economic disaster.
“People worried about overpopulation in Canada are barking up the wrong tree,” says researcher Derek Miedema, author of “Forty years below replacement.” The report was released on Friday by the Institute of Marriage and Family Canada.
“We’re getting older, and the real question is how hard the transition to a fully retired Baby Boomer generation is going to be. Having more kids now would make it easier,” he said in a press release.
The report states that in 25 years, the last wave of Baby Boomers will be ready to retire. An aging population, not overpopulation, is the key demographic issue Canada is facing today.
While the country’s total fertility rate currently sits at 1.63, experts say that a replacement level rate of 2.1 is needed to maintain economic stability.
Canada last achieved replacement fertility 42 years ago, in 1971. In 2010, Canada needed 109,000 more babies to hit the replacement rate, or what amounts to 1,022,971 babies since 2002.
One survey presented in the report found that Canadians want to have more children than they are having. According to the World Values Survey, the ideal number of children for Canadian families was 2.7, much higher than the current fertility rate.
The new report outlines a number of reasons why Canadian women are having fewer children. These include financial reasons. Costs, such as real estate, education, and taxes, are all going up, making it difficult to achieve the financial security that many seek before having children. Women are also waiting longer to marry and have children. There is also the heavy use of birth control which results in sex without pregnancy.
The birth control pill “has had powerful ramifications for the perceived nature and purpose of sex, and plays into delayed marriage alongside delayed childbirth,” the report states.
Added to these reasons is a woman’s recourse to abortion when her birth control fails, or when she simple does not want a child at a point in her life.
“Statistics show that if every aborted baby had been born in 2006, 2009, and 2010, a replacement fertility rate would have been reached or surpassed,” the report states.
More than 3.4 million reported abortions have taken place in Canada since 1969 when the death-causing procedure was first decriminalized. Experts say that the high number is only a low estimate because of the lack of abortion-reporting requirements.
Finally, the report states that getting married and having children are no longer viewed by young people as a “foundation for life” but more as a “capstone” after they have experienced a career, travel, and adventure.
The report recommends a number of solutions to help stem the problems of population aging and underpopulation.
But the report frowns on relying on government intrusion to encourage families to have children.
“Government intervention will not be a solution to what is arguably a problem created by government intervention,” the report states.
The report does, however, recommend that the government maximizes financial freedom for families through the introduction of a family taxation system that would decrease the family tax burden and allow families to handle more of their earnings.
“If having more children is a thing of the past, then wise preparation for the future involves grappling with the idea that we may just have too few children to keep the status quo, particularly with regards to public benefits,” the report concludes.