• 폰트크기작게
  • 폰트크기크게
  • TTS
  • 단어장
  • 기사스크립
  • SNS
2017-10-25 16:23
The government has brought up the possibility of raising the legal age of senior citizens, currently at 65, which makes them eligible for welfare benefits such as free subway access. Finance Minister Kim Dong-yeon told the National Assembly last week the government is considering raising the age or having senior passengers pay during rush hour.

The discussion shouldn't be delayed any longer. Two years ago, the Korea Senior Citizens Association proposed the legal senior citizen age be raised to 70 in light of Koreans’ drastically rising average life expectancy. The government has failed to act on it. Still it is better late than never.

The legal age of 65 was defined in the Senior Citizens Welfare Law in 1981 when the average life span was just 66, compared to 82.1 as of the end of last year: 77.2 for men and 84.1 for women.

Most Koreans of today in their 60s or even 70s are no longer considered old and are still physically capable of earning a paycheck and contributing to society.

The rapid increase in the number of elderly, coupled with the lowest birthrate among major advanced nations, poses many social and economic problems, including a worsening labor shortage and snowballing welfare costs.

The rapidly aging country will soon join the "super-aged" club of 34 countries where more than one in five are 65 or older, with the ratio of the aged population rising to 35.6 percent in 2045 from the present 13.7 percent.

Of course, there are lots of problems to be solved first in the course of examining the upward readjustment of old age with regard to the critical question of whether to reduce welfare benefits. Policymakers should also work on all possible plans to increase jobs for the aged generation. 

Related authorities, including Seoul City Hall, should as soon as possible discuss ways of raising the age entitlement for free subway rides to see how society in general will react to it.

 

  • 폰트크기작게
  • 폰트크기크게
  • TTS
  • 단어장
  • 기사스크립
  • SNS