Basseterre, St. Kitts (SKNIS): Authorities in St. Kitts and Nevis have maintained an extended strategy to promote healthier lifestyles that include organizing activities to encourage physical activity, eating healthy foods, and reducing stress levels.
The strategy is designed to reduce the incidences of non-communicable diseases such as diabetes (high blood sugar) and hypertension (high blood pressure) among the population. As a consequence of this strategy and other factors such as improvements in healthcare, residents are living longer.
The formula, however, leads to an outcome which has caught the attention of St. Christopher and Nevis Social Security Board.
“We have an ageing population. We have far more people getting to pensionable age and fewer people coming into the workforce, and in order for us to pay pension today we depend on workers today to pay,” said Kamilah Lawrence, the organization’s public relations manager. The comment was made on this week’s (December 09, 2020) edition of the radio and television programme Working for You.
Additionally, because persons are in better health at older ages such as 60 to 65 years, they are often unwilling to retire.
“They look as fabulous as you and I, and that’s why you hear them say well [I’m not] ready to go home yet out of the workforce because they still feel productive,” Ms. Lawrence stated.
The issue is not unique to St. Kitts and Nevis as many countries around the world have an ageing population and declining workforce.
To address this, many countries have turned to recruiting migrant workers, encouraging family growth through tax incentives, and increasing the age of retirement.