We must take another look at the area of age and retirement.
For many years here in the Cayman Islands we have been retiring our people much too young. These very experienced workers that have worked in some position for around 20 years that have so many years still to give us; many of them still want to work.
But our system sometimes puts them on the shelf like some old piece of furniture or gift. We must stop this practice and allow our people to work on in their jobs.
A person that retires at 58 still has some very good years to work once they want to and is healthy and mentally sound. I have seen in such places as Sweden where people in their late 70s are still working.
In the USA a president can be elected at age 70. Why is it then do we place our people on retirement early? They should still be working, earning money and securing a higher pension. Many of them being pushed to retire could become teachers, for God knows we need more of our own people teaching their skills to our children and even in such places as a trade school. We must stop being blind to these things. A better future can come out of this for all of us.
If you were to go around and ask all of the older people and get their input you will hear those that are still strong say to you ‘yes, I still want to work but they won’t give me a job or a chance to still work’.
Many of the people that were pushed into early retirement are very unhappy. For many of them cannot do well with the little pension that they now receive. While their pension is at one position, prices around their everyday costs of life go up and up. Many are forced to go out and do such things as pump gas to try and keep up with the cost of living.
We must encourage our people to help the older people in our country to stay in the workforce longer and extend their retirement for as long as they can work.
At the same time try our very best to work with the schools to produce better educated school leavers that can come out of schools with good skills ready to be of great service to our country. This way we will depend less and less on outside workers.
Caymanians, we must do more to live better for our future depends on it. As always one can help many to do good, so let us take another look at early retirement and retirees. Their health can also be effected by this.
Emile S. Levy