Archive for Friday, November 19, 2004

Active retirees

November 19, 2004


To the editor:

The recent confusion about the eligibility of KU retirees for flu shots at Watkins hospital raises interesting questions. One issue is that of the inclusion in/exclusion from the university community of retired faculty and staff. The current discussion leaves that a matter of some doubt. The larger issue is that of the worth of retirees in general, at KU or anywhere. The tenor of the discussion of the past few days might suggest we are drones in the hive who have served our function and deserve no further consideration. It would be hard to convince of that view the many retired faculty who carry on active research programs, serve as consultants all over the country, and even give generously of their time in the classroom for no remuneration.

Then there are the countless retirees who work part-time, volunteer in their church and community organizations (Meals on Wheels, e.g.), work at the polls, and engage in any number of useful activities. It appears some of our fellow citizens have their heads in the sand and do not recognize that life spans and levels of productivity are not what they were 20 or even 10 years ago. Wake up and smell the coffee, friends -- a retiree might well have brewed it!

Elizabeth Banks,


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