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B.C. has the lowest fertility rate in the country

It wasn’t that long ago when a typical Canadian family included a husband and wife and an average of 2.5 kids.

But Stats Canada says the average Canadian family is shrinking and has been for years, particularly here in B.C.

Couples are simply having fewer children, and as that trend continues and baby boomers retire, there’s a very real concern that there won’t be enough people in the workforce to pay the taxes that will be needed to fund skyrocketing health-care costs and other social services.

The birth rate in Canada has declined for a third year in a row, falling to just under 1.61 children per woman in 2011.

And while that’s a slight increase from the decade prior, the trend is downward.

B.C. is the lowest across the country at 1.42 children, blamed by some on the cost of living and it could be a problem in the future. In fact, Nunavut is the only province or territory to surpass the population sustaining level – at just under 3 children per woman.

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Without immigration, we need to produce an average 2.1 children just to keep our numbers up, a level not seen in about 40 years.

 

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