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PAL Place Toronto

The History of PAL Canada

The year 1983 was not the precise year the PAL idea started coming to fruition. For many years, members of the Arts Community had decried the lack of care and support facilities for older members at a stage in their lives when these became increasingly necessary. However, momentum seemed to increase around this time, and there was a crescendo of voices asking for serious investigation into the treatment of senior artists: professionals who had given their lives to the Arts. Usually their dedication was met with insufficient recompense to enable them to live out their remaining years amongst like-minded people, in their own milieu, with available health facilities and a modicum of physical and financial security.

A professional theatre company in Toronto, The Smile Theatre Company, commented on the growing number of older performing artists living in circumstances that were sometimes heart-breaking; unable to keep their homes (if they had been able to accumulate one while in the finicky market of Canadian Culture), ending their days in an institution ill-suited and ill-prepared for the sometimes difficult characteristics of the older artist. In such an atmosphere, alienated from “their old buddies”, living in a place where few, if any, knew their background, and out of touch with colleagues in similar situations. These artists were unhappy to say the least.

Since The Smile Company’s mandate was ... click to continue reading

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