Welfare Employment and Its Impact on the Agricultural Sector Workforce in Trinidad, West Indies

  •  Marcus N. A. Ramdwar    
  •  Wayne Ganpat    
  •  Leevun A. R. Solomon    


The agricultural sector in Trinidad and Tobago is characterized by a labor shortage. A qualitative research design was used to investigate the impact of a national welfare employment program, on the agriculture labor sector. The study recruited n = 19 Community-Based Environmental Protection and Enhancement Program (CEPEP) employees, n = 10 farmers and n = 7 agricultural professionals for in-depth interviews and focus group sessions. A review was conducted of newspaper articles and national budget statements for content related to CEPEP and agriculture. A thematic analysis was conducted to establish themes from the data gathered from the participants and from the media review. The themes emerged were “CEPEP’s benefits to agriculture”, “Labor shortages in Agriculture”, “Convenience Employment” and “Challenges to CEPEP in Agriculture”. The study concludes that welfare employment can be incorporated into the development agenda for agriculture in Trinidad and Tobago once the issues of capacity building, retooling and mentorship, wage adjustments are factored into a structured program.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.