The plight of the elderly calypsonian


Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Calypsonian Crazy ( Edwin Ayoung) has brought up the issue of ageing and elderly calypsoniansin   ( like DeFosto , for example) in T&T who struggle with their health and the ability to support themselves financially.

The calypso art-form is not particularly lucrative these days , and except for the most successful , many struggle to make ends meet.
Many of us who care about our culture also care about the welfare of our elderly artists who helped create the culture.

One of the most important things an organization like TUCO Trinidad and Tobago ( the calypsonian’s organization) should do is to establish a pension fund for it’s members.
On their website , their mission statement claims “It’s mission is to grow TUCO into a caring viable organization providing for the artistic social and economic welfare of its members, increasing the exposure of calypso to the people of the world”.

It is true that self employed individuals like calypsonians should consider setting up such plans for themselves , to be assured of a measure of financial security in later years , but many are uninformed about these matters , or simply cannot afford especially as youths, which is the best time to do so.
At my age , a major consideration is proper, affordable health care which I’m fortunate to have , and I feel for those who cannot afford it.

One of the major failings of the Trinidad government is not setting up a decent health care system for all its people ( like Cuba did , for example ) when the oil money was flowing.
And politicians and their supporters from different parties like to point fingers and blame each other , but they should all look in the mirror.
They are all to blame , everyone who ever had political power in T&T.

The country owes it to our ageing artists , indeed to all our elderly citizens to assist in providing a measure of medical security in their so called “golden” years.

Unfortunately , that is far from being done.

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