Did you know that Canada has a Financial Literacy Leader?
Jane Rooney was appointed Canada's Financial Literacy Leader in 2014 within the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada (FCAC).
Yes, there is a government official whose main job is to make sure Canadians are financially literate.
Jane is awesome and she's joining me in the second half of this episode.
But first let’s talk about the only reason I even know Jane exists, and that’s because of the Conference Board of Canada.
Earlier this week, February 21st and 22nd, 2018, they hosted a conference called Financial Wellness and Retirement Readiness.
While preparing for the conference I found out the FCAC was a sponsor and they offered me an interview with Jane Rooney.
From the Conference Board I was offered an interview with their Vice-President of Industry, Strategy and Public Policy, Louis Thériault.
Louis gave a great presentation about the current state of financial wellness in the workplace.
After the presentation I sat down with Louis and asked him how he got into this world of economic and policy analysis.
As Louis says in the interview, there is a quadruple gain with financial wellness programs: The employee gets financial information and support to get out of financial trouble or to prevent them from getting into it in the first place; the employer benefits from less down time and more productivity; the insurers save money when overall health is improved; and, overall wellness is good for society as a whole.
So companies are making positive changes, what about the government?
When I started researching Jane Rooney for this interview, I was totally surprised by the commitment the government has made to strengthen the financial literacy of Canadians.
A common theme at the conference and in the discussion with Jane is the importance of overall wellness.
Whether you go through what I did and have mental health issues that caused addiction which led to financial problems, or whether you have unanticipated financial issues, which in turn may cause mental health issues, we now understand that one can’t be addressed without looking at the others.
And though we didn’t focus on it, physical wellness including healthy eating habits play a huge part in overall wellness as well.
I would like to thank Jane and Louis for taking the time to share their stories and insight. It’s comforting to know that there are people out there who are looking out for us and trying to improve the overall well-being of Canadians.
Here's the link to the FCAC hotline that Jane mentioned in the episode: https://www.canada.ca/en/financial-consumer-agency/corporate/contact-us.html
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