By 2056, the median age is expected to reach 46.9 years, almost 20 years higher than it was in 1956. We are getting older. We are also marrying less, are more ethnically diverse. Aboriginal Canadians are moving to the cities in increasing numbers. English speaking Quebeckers are abandoning the rural in favour of the urban. There are seismic demographic shifts happening in Canada, and each of them is changing our work, our health, our families and our politics.
This season The Current examines the Canadian Shift and asks if we are ready for the changes. This major project will tell the stories of individuals who are caught in the shift through documentaries and interviews. We will take you to Canada's oldest and youngest cities. And we will go beyond our borders to China, India and Africa as the demographic shifts ripple throughout the world.
Arlene Weintraub, author of Selling the Fountain of Youth (Nov 8/10)
Saint Andrew's church in La Tuque, Quebec has stood for a century. But now there aren't enough English-speaking Anglicans to keep it going.
Listen to CBC's Elias Abboud's documentary, The Silencing of St. Andrew's, about how the closure of this church is symbolic of what's happening to anglophone communities in rural Quebec.
To view pictures from this documentary, click here
The Quebec Government is pulling out all the stops for parents these
days. If you're a working couple with two children in Ottawa, you'll
probably pay 80 to 100 dollars-a-day for childcare. Across the river in
Gatineau, Quebec ... you'd pay 14-dollars-a-day. You'd get better
parental leave too. There's even a special leave just for Dads. And as
of last month, if you're infertile, the Quebec Government will cover
the cost of In Vitro Fertilization.
The Quebec Government has spent 13 years overhauling its Family Policy. The goal has been to boost two demographics ... new births and working women. As part of our project Shift, our Quebec Producer Susan McKenzie decided to take a look at whether the program has worked and whether it's sustainable. We aired her documentary, Baby Bump.
The average age of women giving birth in Canada was 29.7 years in 2004, a slight increase from 29.6 in 2003. This continues a long-established upward trend and we're asking what does it mean for children and for society to have older parents. We also look at the options healthy women are taking to delay pregnancy such as freezing their eggs.
Listen to The Perfect Martini - a documentary that proves that friendship truly does come in all forms:
As part of our project Shift, we have a documentary about how changes are being reflected in the art produced in the Arctic ... particularly the iconic art of the Cape Dorset stone cut prints. The small community of Cape Dorset has produced world class artists for 50 years. They brought a raw description of the life of the Inuit, as well as the animals and spirits of the Arctic.
Now, the themes and styles are changing. And not everyone is happy about it. Peter Sheldon is a CBC reporter in Iqaluit, Nunavut. He has been documenting those changes at the West Baffin Co-op in Cape Dorset. His documentary is called, Etched in Stone.
Ian Goldring is a Canadian
citizen living abroad. But thanks to changes to Canada's Citizenship
Act, he is unable to pass on his citizenship to his 15-month-old
daughter, Chloe. As a result, she has no official nationality and is
unable to travel anywhere.
Anna Maria Tremonti talks to Ian Goldring and we examine the effect the changes to Canada's Citizenship Act are having on other Canadians and their children.
When Susan's father went through his own sudden illness, she brought him and her mother home to live when her. She presents her story in a documentary called The Caregiver by The Current's Documentary Editor Dick Miller.
To learn more about about Susan's story go to The Legacy Project's website.
Between 1915 and 1970, about six million African-Americans left the south for New York City, Detroit, Philadelphia, Cleveland and Chicago along with west-coast cities such as Los Angeles and Oakland. It's known as The Great Migration. When it began, 90 per cent of black Americans lived in the south and mainly in rural areas. By the time it was over, nearly half lived in the North and mostly in big cities.
It was a movement that re-made American society and one that Isabel Wilkerson calls "the biggest under-reported story of the 20th century." In her book The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America's Great Migration. In it, she tells the stories of three African-Americans who were part of that migration. Isabel Wilkerson joined us from Atlanta, Georgia.
Read more »
Pat Thane, author of The Long History of Old Age and The History of Old Age talks about the concerns we are seeing today about our aging population (the demographic time bomb) and how these concerns have the same panic that occurred both in the 1930s/1940s when one researcher predicted England's population would be 4.4 million by the 1970s and again in the 80s.
Read more »
Stephen Coles has spent 15 years studying the tissues of people who live over the age of 110 because something in the genetic makeup of super-centenarians has enabled them to avoid diseases. While some feel this is a great way to learn how to prevent disease, medical ethicists have some concerns.
Read more »
There is a grim reality of HIV/AIDS rates among young aboriginal women in Saskatchewan and one young woman who's determined not to be just another statistic. Meet Krista Shore, in 2006 she was diagnosed with HIV. With a drug addiction and her children in care, she reached out for help and changed her life.
Read more »
|Day two in Saskatoon and today we focus on Saskatchewan's large aboriginal population, which makes up a disproportionate percentage of the province's population of prison inmates, gang members and high school dropouts. Meet a retired priest working to keep young aboriginals off the streets, off drugs and out of gangs.
Listen to Day Two of our Saskatoon Remote
The Current heads to Saskatoon to check out the changes the city is going through because of a booming economy and a growing population. Anna Maria pays a visit to a bison farm north of Prince Albert, where a small group of farmers are trying to revitalize the province's shrinking French-speaking population.
Listen to Day One of our Saskatoon Remote
Twenty years ago today, CBC Television put a man named Peter Jepson-Young on the evening news. They brought him back every week and for 111 episodes, he documented his days as he died of AIDS. A lot has changed since then. But a lot has stayed the same. We revisit the Dr. Peter Diaries.
We devote our last half hour to the stories of people living with AIDS ... to find out how our attitudes towards the disease and the ways of treating it have changed in the generation since it first burst into public consciousness.
|Munir Sheikh spent almost 40 years as a civil servant in Ottawa. It's hardly the kind of work that makes you a household name ... unless you end your career by resigning from Statistics Canada at the height of the controversy over the mandatory long-form census. |
We talk to Munir Sheikh about the importance of good data and why he felt he had to resign his post.
The growing ranks of centenarians in Canada is worth celebrating, but also worth some sober thought. We bring together a panel to discuss our social policies and outlook towards the elderly and whether they are out of step with reality.
Read more »
Our Documentary Editor, Dick Miller brings us The Demographer's Dilemma, which examines the challenges of tracking the trajectory of humankind.
Read more »
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