Low Fertility in Canada: The Nordic Model in Quebec and the U.S. Model in Alberta

Roderic Beaujot, Juyan Wang

Abstract


Among the factors that are responsible for low fertility, the risks
experienced by young people are particularly relevant. In that context, it
is noteworthy that fertility is rising most in Alberta and Quebec, that is in
provinces where young families have had the security of either good job
opportunities or supportive social policy. The fertility trend in Canada
has seen a low point of 1.51 in 2002, rising to a total fertility rate of 1.66
in 2007. The trends and differences are placed in the context of family
and work questions, including the division of paid and unpaid work by
gender. By marital status, family structure and work orientation, fertility
is highest for women and men who are married, with no step children
and intermediate work orientation. We summarize the changing policy
context, proposing that social policy has become more supportive of
families with young children, especially in Quebec but also in the rest of
Canada.

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