Miller wins $5 minimum wage

| 09/09/2011

(CNS): After several attempts at persuading the government to introduce a minimum wage, the independent member for North Side finally won the day in the Legislative Assembly on Thursday. Government accepted his private member’s motion to amend the Labour Law to provide for a national basic wage of $5 per hour for adult workers, to be reviewed every five years. Following the vote, which won the approval of every member present in the House, Ezzard Miller told CNS he was delighted to have finally gained the government’s support for a minimum wage and its agreement to amend the legislation. (Photo Dennie Warren Jr)

Well aware that during the debate on the motion the labour minister had made it clear he would not be rushing to bring the legislation, Miller said that he would be ensuring government followed through on the vote.

Debating Miller’s proposal, Rolston Anglin, the minister responsible for labour, said that although government was accepting the motion, he wanted to consider various issues, including whether or not the $5 was high enough, how frequently it should be reviewed, how to stop employers dropping wages down to the level of the minimum wage and if there should be more exceptions other than juveniles, before he brought the bill to the Legislative Assembly.

Offering what was clearly reluctant support for the motion, he raised a number of questions and queries about the introduction of a minimum adult flat rate of pay. Anglin questioned whether or not this was the right time, given the economic situation, how it would affect people who earned gratuities, where it would leave domestic helpers and many more points. But he and all of the government members and all the members of the opposition voted ‘Yes’ when the motion was put to the House.

Miller had tried numerous times in the past through various amendments to government bills as well as other private members motions to get government to enshrine the principle of a basic national across-the-board minimum wage in law since being elected. He stated that he had brought the motion because he believed in doing what was right and not what would attract votes at the next election.

Speaking after the debate, Miller said he was extremely pleased that he had finally gained a minimum wage, which he said would offer real hope to the Caymanian people. He stated that there was a long standing need for a minimum wage and that now even the Chamber of Commerce, which had long opposed the move, was in support.

“I have consulted widely and found very little resistance to it,” he said. “We are under pricing labour and driving Caymanians from jobs that they could take.” He said local workers were being undercut by the foreign labour that employers were allowed to bring in and pay ridiculously low wages.

Miller said no one could live in Cayman on anything less than $5 per hour and employers paying less than that should be ashamed. He said the issue of domestic workers should not be a concern as half of any wages in the labour law can be paid in kind, which included food and accommodation. He noted that these were the people entrusted to bring up children and it was disgusting that anyone would be paying less than $2.50 in cash to someone in such a position.

During the debate the opposition leader, who has also been a long supporter of a minimum wage, said it was one of his biggest regret that events conspired to prevent him from introducing this, but pointed out that it was linked to issues of immigration. He said that for too long Cayman had “been importing poverty”, something that a minimum wage could address.

As the debate concluded and Miller gained the support of all members in the Legislative Assembly, he warned that he would be paying very close attention to the government’s commitment to the minimum wage, given that they had told him over a year ago that they were going to bring the legislation very soon. He said that if government did not introduced the amendments that they had just voted through in the near future, he would be bringing the motion back again in the New Year.

Category: Politics

Comments (146)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Good new for some people.

    Now how about we address some of those health insurance issues…

     

  2. The Crown says:

    Yesssssssssssssss!!! Most people need a grove of money tree's to live here.. but maybe this means no more Conch & Whelk season. Hmmmmmmm?? Ezzard Miller is the greatest! His aura is reminiscent of,as well as rekindles the golden time of single member constituencies. However.. it does tickle the conscience as to who genuinely could not afford to pay the minimum as it is set now. And yet further still.. Exactly who occupies the majority of job's at the present time???

  3. Anonymous says:

    If an employer can so easily  get away with failing to pay an employee his legally mandated medical and  pension contributions, or even worse, makes him pay his required contributions, only to stick them in his own pocket, and on top of this, steals his work-permit fees out of his wages, how in God's name will this minimum wage be enforced?

     

    The same control through fear will simply be applied to the minimum wage. "Shut up or lose your job." Tell me this won't happen! Tell me anything will change! I hope that Ezzard works hard to upgrade enforcement to protect those who are otherwise defenceless. This will be the real test of his legislative baby, otherwise it's just window-dressing, which knowing Ezzard, I don't believe he intends it to be.

  4. Anonymous says:

    who is going to oversee this? I can always say i pay 5$ and pay less. What are you going to do, look at the checks i write…hell I paid cash. same with work permits.What ever happened to the GOL cards for 1 year holders. Cayman needs a national ID card with fingerprints for everyone and then you will see changes.

     

  5. Anonymous says:

    $5.00 MINIMUM WAGE FEAT! HOORAY! EZZIE! GREAT FEAT! Please!

  6. Anonymous says:

    Well at least that CI$5 can get me almost a gallon of milk.

  7. ExPat aka Off the Top of My Head says:

    The ignorant and arrogant attitude in some of the posts made on this issue stink nad literally make me feel sick.  

    As an expat, who lives out in the Eastern districts in the middle of a very harmonious and community-minded area, I can tell that many of these (disgusting) posts are clearly made by expats too – but the wrong kind of expats with a mindset such that they do not deserve the hospitality of Cayman and its people, and its sickening to think that people with such blatantly racist and/or negative opinions mighthave residencies here, when there are others who are more deserving; who show some compassion and understanding; who fully integrate with the community and will probably never get a residency. 

    Let me paint a picture, starting with my Caymanian friends, which hopefully will objectively demonstrate the need for minimum wage legislation (and its strict enforcement) here in the Cayman Islands:

    One of those Caymanians is now working for $4.50 p/h serving at a restaurant.  Another is now fishing for a living and walking onto building sites asking for work.  Yet another has done odd jobs to save up sufficient money to buy some basic gardening and mechanics tools so that he can earn is own money doing gardening and fixing cars.  Two of them tried to get some labouring work near to where I live, on my recommendation because the prospective employer had an attitude like yours and said he could find no Caymanians to work at his place doing hard labour.  I told him I knew of several and the boys turned up ready and willing to work less than 24 hours later.  They worked a whole day for free to show theywere willing and able only to be turned down by the employer who was pleased with their work but said he couldn’t afford to pay them $5 an hour they were seeking.  They were clearly very disappointed.  I was disappointed too,  especially when I learnt that the same prospective employer had then sought (and from what he told me, obtained) government assistance in obtaining labour from abroad because he said he “couldn’t find any Caymanians interested or able to do the work”.  It transpires that his imported labour will be working for $3 p/h without health insurance or pension – now how can a person legally do this if he was following the law?  In this case it's definitely not for the lack of wanting a job, or unwillingness to work.  Same men are such hard workers that I and others in the area gladly pay them $50 a day to do chores, gardening and repairs around our yards, as and when we can afford it, to help them out. They are helpful, polite, honest and very hardworking and they deserve a better chance in life.  They certainly don’t deserve the harsh criticism that you and others infer in your posts here on CNS.

    Then I know of a lovely live-in Jamaican lady who looks after an incontinent elderly woman for a Caymanian emloyer.  She earns less than $1,000 a month with no pension, no healthcare insurance, and no vacation entitlement (the few times she takes a vacation she goes unpaid).  She is told she is lucky as she has a free roof over her head and her work permit paid for, yet she pays for and cooks all the food that she and the elderly woman eats, because her employer only turns up once a month to drop off her pay, and quite often is late even doing that.  It amazes me that this employer can treat his helper so shoddily let alone his own mother.  She is a very lovely and humble Jamaican lady, and she says she does feel lucky, because at least she can afford to send home some money to help her grand-daughter through school.        

    Two Jamaican men from my area work in construction on $5 an hour.  The cost of their annual work permits, pension and healthcare are deducted from their weekly pay so they are left with pretty much nothing to live on.  They grow their own vegetables and catch fish in an effort to eat without going to too much expense, and they live in squalid conditions.

    A sweet Filippino girl living close to me earns $200 a week working 12 hours a day from 7 till 7 looking after 2 small children, cleaning the house and doing laundry for her American employer.  Again, no health insurance and no pension.  She lives in an 8 foot square room with no windows and no A/C in small wooden house occupied by 7 other Filippinos on similar wages.  She lives to earn sufficient money to put her daughter back in the Filippines through college, in the hope that her daughter can have a better life and better opportunities than she has.

    All of these people living in my community would share their last dollar or loaf of bread with you.  Unlike so many here on CNS, they live by the age-old principle "do good and good will follow".  All of these people are far, far better people than many of the people making such sickening self-conceited comments here.

    And I ask all of you posters with negative, anti-Caymanian comments on here this:

    Would you go out there and work 8-10 hours or more a day in the hot sun 5-6 days a week for a measly $3 an hour, with no health insurance and no pension, and possibly having the cost of your work permit deducted as well?  Would you be happy to live in cramped and squalid conditions sharing a tiny house, bathroom and kitchen with no A/C or proper facilities with several other people who you don't know?  I thought not, you like sitting in your nice, lavishly furnished, air conditioned houses and offices patronising people less fortunate than you too much.

    So you people just carry on disrespecting people and see where it gets you.  What goes around comes around and I am a great believer in Karma.  I suspect many of you, expat or otherwise, who are dead set against a minimum wage and are making so much negative comments do so because you are finally going to have to pay that helper a decent wage to look after your children or clean your house and do your dirty laundry. 

    Shame on you.

    • Anonymous says:

      My comments, some posts below, were not meant to be negative. I would willingly pay someone $10 per hour if they would work for me for 4 to 6 hours a week as a helper,…but no Caymanian has ever answered an ad … I know plenty of people who would do the same…so someone could work the hours they wanted, all they have to do is work for more than one household each day…….I am not willing to pay an agency $10 to $15 per hour for them to pay slave wages to someone here who is on a work permit, so until I find someone who is able to work for me, legally, directly, I employ no one.

    • Loopy Lou says:

      What an emotional rant which is misses the facts the economic reality is what counts with legislation such as this.  That nice Jamaican helper – she will be gone with the law in force.  How is that going to help the lady she looks after?  Make $4.5 at a restaurant?  Well if you can't make 50c an hour in tips buck up your customer service.

      This law will cost jobs in Cayman, including Caymanian jobs, and increase the costs of buying services in Cayman.

    • Anonymous says:

      …"(and its strict enforcement)"…

       

      This is the crux of the matter. The labour laws, pension and health care, are currently ignored by immoral employers and not enforced by an equally immoral immigration department.

       

      The real evil here is the immigration law aka indentured slavery law that puts draconian power into the hands of employers. This law guarantees that your young, polite and hardworking Caymanians will be permanently locked out of the Cayman labour market in favour of low paid and abused indentured slaves. When a third world indentured slave complains about mistreatment, they are quickly and quietly deported.

       

      The immigration law was enacted by Caymanian politicians who are members of the Caymanian upper crust. These folks like the status quo because they get their toilets cleaned by cheap expat labour that accept brutally low wages and put up with abuse. These folks do not want to employ their fellow Caymanians because native born Caymanians have rights and will not tolerate low wages and abuse. The labour playing field is heavily tilted to favour the importation of indentured slaves.

       

      The real enemy of the Caymanian working class is the Caymanian ruling class.

      • Anonymous says:

        By ruling class, you mean middle class?

        White collar Caymanians also have a hard time finding employment, and they are not competing with 'indentured slaves'. 

      • Anonymous says:

        10.46. I've only one response to your contribution, and that's the Cockney version: "VERTICAL!". (pronounced 'vurr-ikkle.') There's nothing more powerful than the truth.

    • Anonymous says:

      Its obviously better than where they come from otherwise they wouldn't be working here.  A number of the things you say they are doing is illegal.

      From your attitude if seems you think we should have a minimum wage to help low income workers from overseas.  That sounds like charity, not a government policy. 

      A minimum wage does help so low income local workers wont have to compete with people living in such conditions, and which most likely hussle on the side by fishing illegally etc..  What will happen is instead of paying two people from overseas for $3/per hour, they will hire one for $5 if its even enforced.

      • Off The Top of My Head says:

        No.  I was saying that if we had a minimum wage that (contrary to common opinion here on CNS) some Caymanians ARE prepared to work for,(as mentioned in one of my posts earlier and then discarded as nonsense by many readers), then this will hopefully discourage employers from bringing in cheap labour from abroad.  My post was trying to demonstrate the full picture, not only my Caymanian friends who were prepared to work for $5 per hour, but also the way those on less than $5 have to live, and the way employers bend the Immigration law to suit their own purposes.  So what you are saying is the samepoint I was trying to make.

    • Dennie Warren Jr. says:

      ExPat,

       

      I too believe that what goes around come around.  It is sad to know that such things are happening in the Cayman Islands.

  8. Anonymous says:

    This does not do anything for poor people really. Employers and merchants will just add it to the bill and those same poor people now have to pay more. End result Cayman gets more costly and poor people get poorer.

  9. McCarron McLaughlin says:

    This law needs to be repealed by the next government, we have a bunch of "know it alls" tryimg to appease a very small sigment of the population.

    What Ezzard and McKeeva should have consider first was finding ways to lower the COST OF LIVING before doing this as it will not be attractive to Caymanians.

    How can this law be benificial with the Cost of Living where it's at?

    • Anonymous says:

      Lower the cost of living, please tell me when and where in the world has this happened in the past decade? You might get a reduction on the price of property, cars and other luxury items but forget it about basic goods and services they will never decrease that is the way of the world not just in Cayman.

      • McCarron McLaughlin says:

        Bad time for minimum wage

        Lowering the cost of living could be achieved if the government would lead by example and start eliminating the national debt, continuing to grow an ineffective civil service at the rate it was grown over the last decade was not in the best interest of these Islands and now we the taxpayers are suffering for that.

        Discontinuing the $0.50 per gallon fuel duty would help a great deal at the pump and CUC, last time I checked the fuel duty represents 10% to 15% of CUC bill.

        This government could have lowered the cost of doing business in Cayman when the economy was down, remember Economics 101 "you always tax in good times and reduce taxes in bad times" they did the opposite, I believe we may have been better off if they did nothing, losing all those businesses and permits wasn’t worth it, by trying to tax our way out of the downturn.

        Why aren’t the supermarkets finding cheaper sources of food for example in Central America, Nicaragua for example has cheaper staples food, beef, seafood, pork, etc than the USA? Is it because the supermarket get their food on credit from the US suppliers and may lose their credit if they dare find other suppliers?

        Why does the Agriculture Department have these barriers that make it impossible to import foods from other countries on a large scale? Ask yourself this question.

        The middle and lower class are always hit the hardest and the minimum is always expecting from the upper/rich class.

        If our government had better oversight over our entitlement system aka Social Service Department we could save a lot, by giving those that really need,  and make the people that don’t need or otherwise can work less dependent on handouts would be beneficial, because the manipulation of our Social Services Dept is one of the biggest injustices in Cayman and this needs to be fixed sooner than later, less people dependent would be beneficial for government and the public in the long run.

        I fully accept there are many outside influences that dictate our cost of living but this madness of a minimum wage will cause more burden on Caymanians as our system will be flooded with foreign low wage earners, this will surely lower the standard of living NOT the cost of living.

        In an already weak system of check and balances, if you believe employers fooled Immigration before wait until the minimum wage comes into effect, this new law in effect gives employers a reason to NOT hire Caymanians as the majority of Caymanians can’t live off CI$ 5.00 per hour, Immigration doesn’t come near in effectively policing the work force now it will be worst I‘m afraid.

      • Anonymous says:

        Reduce signifiantly the crippling duty on fuel and the price of "everyhting" will go down.  CUC bills are crippling the porest in our community.  Placing high taxes on the cost of utilities is socially irresponsible. 

  10. Anonymous says:

    Nice move Mr. Miller now we need a law to reactivate the repatration fee  and to it refundable once more.  The cost should be much higher the amount should be the cost of a one way first class ticket to the person country of origin and the repatriation fee should be given back to the employer, after a specific period say seven years after the employee has left the jurisdication.  The government could place the repatriation fees in an interest bearing account.

  11. Anonymous says:
    SIR:: Can You live on $5.00 an Hour?? and then you report that is will be reviewed in 5 years.. Can you really believe that costs will not go up in 5 years?? Who will police, enforce or monitor this to see that it will happen??  
     
    They are Not doing their Jobs now !!  NO ONE checks now that people have health insurance, so who will be checking this?? Also why do some people have to pay for their own "Work Permits". Is this "Legal" ?
     
    I have a Friend that works 10-12 hours a day, no over time pay, holiday pay or some time no pay at all. When asked was told "Do not have the Money at this time" (Who can live like that ?)
     
    I find that the Employee does not have anyone on their side to help them. The Brac is worse.. I asked about this at times and was told, If I complain I will never get a work permit here in Cayman Islands again..
     
    Why Make rules, Regulation, but NO follow up on enforcing them?   I am all for a living wage, but this is slap in the face.
     
    Thank You for letting me have my say !! 
  12. Anonymous says:

    A slap in the face if you ask me.  $5 dollars an hours?  That's an insult.  I suppose it's better than nothing.  However, 1 person cannot  survive with the cost of living in the Cayman Islands with that wage.  Even by the most meager standards.

  13. Anonymous says:

    UNA think McKeva Bad–  una wait until MacEzzard finish with his laws

  14. Anonymous says:

    It's been a long time coming, thanks Mr. Miller change has come for poor people. 

  15. Anonymous says:

    I did not know that they were any such thing as so call promotions for helpers…..Congrats to all the expat  domestic helpers, you have just been promoted a $5.00 minimum working wage offer….if by any chance you do not get promoted in the near future please contact Immigration for further information or Mr. Ezzard Miller who will be voted out in 2012 due to lack of Governership for the Caymanian people.

  16. Anonymous says:

    Good Idea ! bad timing ! Should of had this in place a long time ago or waited a bit to see what the WORLD economy will do. I voted UDP for Bodden Town and i regret it .So lets sit back and see what happens.Will more people be employed ? or will more people be laid off. ?

  17. Anonymous says:

    Thank god finally!!  Ezzard you should be the Premier. You not only thought about self but for all the people in the cayman islands. 

    For the people who are claiming that the cost of living is going to go up . Thats true but it won't be the because we have a minimum wage. It will be the fall of the world economy and the US dollar going down along with the euro.

  18. Anonymous says:

    You think you are paying plenty for your Fast foods now. lets wait and see how much this is going to effect them……. $15.00 value meals

    • Anonymous says:

      Not a bad thing with $15.00 value meals, junk foods gone, maybe then 'Caymanians will be healthy again with some good alternatives.

  19. Anonymous says:

    WOW! So many negative thoughts about bringing in minimum wage! its easy for those who sit in an office all day and make 10-25$ hr to make comments on cost of living. What about the people who are makine 3-4$ per hour and not even doing a full days work? Honestly some of you have your heads too far up your a** to realise that this helps people who are here suffering and living in poverty, these are still people, human beings and deserve every right the rest of us do. Caymanain or not 3-4$per hour is RIDICULOUS! When some of us are home with our lights switched on some1 is home with no lights…think about that! Is this something us as a nation want for our kids in the future? Not every1 is going to be a DR or a scientist, or CEO of a company, we need to be realistic, so there needs to be some stability for those who barely make it through high school. And with this minimum wage it will create that!

    YES cost of living is high, but so is our greedyness! Spend on what you NEED and not what u WANT or think you need. CUC, Water Authority, these are things we cant live without so why do we sit and complain about prices being too high when we want the luxeoury of AC and TV's washer and DRYER and all the other things that burn electricity? Before we knew anything about AC our parents and their parents dealt with the summer heats and having no AC etc, so suck it up! If you want to burn AC and all these other things then you have to pay for it just like everything else in this world!

    I make 11$per hour no overtime and a wrk week of 45hrs, and that can barely stretch, so imagine these ppl working for little to nothing!

    As for the byast comments that caymanians dont want to work, for GOODNESS SAKE PEOPLE WAKE UP!!!! You really think that a caymanian is going to work for 3-4$per hr as a starting salary PLEASE! We as caymanians have a bad rep when it comes to working, but why should we settle for that? Why should any1 for that matter. Now dont get me wrong, im all for working and earning an honest living but 3-4$per hr?? Sorry wouldnt be me! Im sick of hearing that "Caymanians dont want to work" some i agree just plain and staright LAZY but not all of us are! Caymanians based on our track record for "not wanting to work" have a hard time getting hired because thats what we are all judged off. Some could try harder and others need to just plain and upright TRY! We need to come together as a nation and prove people wrong! Of course there are a few bad ones in the bunch but we cant let them continue to create a bad rep for the rest of us who REALLY NEED and WANT to work.

    As for the comments in regards to Ezzard…wow some people are just SIMPLE/NARROW minded! Is this a victory for him? Id say so, as well as a victory for the people it affects! Ezzard has been the one politician that had been trying to do good for this Islands while Mckeeva and his minions aka puppets destroy it! Mckeeva is looking to make his wallet fatter not giving a rats a** about what happens to Grand Cayman. Whereas Ezzard is trying to better this Island and trying to tlk some sense into our community who have been brain washed by the Anti Christ Mckeeva!

    Im not one for politics but right it right and wrong is wrong! Ezzard has been trying his best with getting certain things passed in the LA while Mckeeva shoots them down one by one…as far as im concerned Mckeeva does what he wants when he wants and doesnt care who's feet he steps on including us fellow Caymanians! We meed to all grow some BALLS and let him know what time it is! Its time to take back our Island and get it back under control!

    Signed

    SYEE

     

    • Anonymous says:

      If one doesn't want a minimum wage job then one needs to go get an education!! Once you have an education, you must realize that you start at the bottom of the company and then work your way up the ranks. You want to make the "Doctor's" salary…then you must put in the years of study.

       

       

      • Anonymous says:

        Like thats going to happen.   No it will just be more crying and whineing but definitely not going out and getting a job.  Just more if its not what I'm intitiled to then I don't have to do it.

        Which is great.  More jobs for those who deserve it and will actually show up and do it.

        • Anonymous says:

          When I lost my job I had to go out and work 3 crappy just barely over minimum wage jobs to make ends meet!  I did this for over a year.  If you want it….the jobs are there. Get your butts out there and work! BTW…I have a master's degree + 35 credits in my field. I didn't like it, but I wanted to pay my bills, hold my head up high and survive on my own!!!

    • Anonymous says:

      Amen!

    • Anonymous says:

      And you think Caymanians will work for $5.00 an hour, do you?  This proposed legislation will not help Caymanians back to work, it will just mean a few more low paid workers can send a few more dollars back to their families abroad!

    • Anonymous says:

      ever heard the saying "eat little and live long"? It is interesting that "Caymanians" will not work for $3-$4 an hour, or even $5 as someone else suggested….but is it better to have NO JOB at all? At least at that rate something is coming in to pay a bill or two and buy some food and be less of a burden on Social Services and the public.

  20. Anonymous says:

    What happens in the case oflive-in-helpers that are not being charged light, water or doesnt have to buy groceries?

    • Anonymous says:

      lWant some cheese with that wine?  Work it out to $5 an hour and if that is too hard well than its too hard.

      • Anonymous says:

        Your comment comes across as an uneducated one. Do you have a helper? im guessing not. Do you own a reteraunt or bar. Im betting not. I am all for people making money and having a certain quality of life but not at the exspense of my own. My helper gets $100/week for 55 hours a week. You think this is me being cruel or cheap. She also gets a 860 SF Apartment with cable, electricity, running water A/C, full health ins. and an extra room for her daughter. With this new minimum wage I now have to pay her an extra $37.50/week assuming I never ask her to work late. So now what? I will let her go and hire a new helper for $500 – $700.00 /month and save a TON of money and my helper will be out of a job. In total my helper costs me around $475/week (assuming I rent out the apartment she stays in above the garage) This is BAD BAD BAD the way it has been done. There need to be exceptions. It cost my helper exactly zero dollars to live in cayman because we pay for EVERYTHING. Learn what you are talking about before you make a comment or better yet make sure your children are educated so they dont have to worry about minimum wage!!!!!

        • truth says:

          Can you really be that……uneducated? $5.00 per hour is just that.  Minimum wage!  It sounds like with all the benifits you give her she gets more already.  Get it?  Sounds like this doesn't apply to you.  In other words  if you give her more than $5.00 an hour TOTAL..which includes everything she gets for working for you, you are GOOD.  Now relax.

          • BS says:

            Generally when you calculated a salary it is the hourly rate.  You are refering to the ladys total compensation package which is not included in the calculation of the salary.  Therefore her salary will have to increase to meet the demands of the new law. 

            This is not practical for many people.  The law was intended to help the Cayman people but it seems to be a very small segment of the Cayman people the lower class which are on social services anyway.  The way to help them is through education and to assist them with improving their skill set.  The middle class, the larger population will be adversely affected by this because they are not poor enough to receive help from social services and will have to pay out more money which they don't have.  The upper class population sees this as a good thing because they have the extra finances to spend on the increased price of goods and salaries.  The ones which don't like it also have the means to relocate.

            This is purely a political move and something that was not well thought out. 

            Education is the way to go for the islands. Focus on that and a minimum law would not be needed.  The children of the next working generation should be trained to have a career and a skill set in the event the career falters.  Working in conjunction with both is to have these children taught work ethic and the importance of charity.  Re-educate them that it is better to give than to receive.  Make it mandatory for them to volunteer at the Red Cross, Humane Society, Pines etc. Those volunteer organizations can provide valuable training opportunities which would cost the govt nothing. 

            For all the people that don't want a minimum wage push the govt to push for education. 

          • Anonymous says:

            That is false. You can only count 2.50/hour in "extras" the rest but be paid in "real dollars" My point was that it will hurt helpers working for upscale families wayyyyyy more than it will help them. Its a fact. I was having a bbq with a bunch of good friends and they all agree.

        • Anonymous says:

          Gosh educated one who are you to admonish anyone before examining your own flawed statement about having knowledged before making a comment or ensuring that their children are educated so they don't have to worry about working for minimum wage?

          Word wide facts (that even the school children as we would say in England knows) education is an excellent life investment, however due to the currenty economic conditions of the world an education is no guarantee that one will not be without a job or even have to accept minimum wage, so before you get this mightier than thou attitude just get to know your facts that there are now persons within the USA with Bachelors and MBA degress in the great USA who are unable to find a job in a fast food joint (yes and they pay minimum wage) much less any where else, I won't even mention Greece.  While teaching your children the value of a good education which is great, also let them know that this is the real world and there is honour in an honest days work even at minimium wage because one day very soon they might have to be fighting to get a minimum wage job in this very islands or some where else in this big wide world.

  21. Anonymous says:

    That's ok.  Govt. will pay for all the elderly people's caregivers, cause that $550 a month isn't going to be enough to pay for their living expenses plus the minimum of $1000 a month to pay a caregiver.  I guess it all balances out, removing the Civil Servants from the free health care and paying it out to the nannies and caregivers.

  22. Anonymous says:

    Congratulations Ezzard!!! I am an employer and agree 100% with what you have accomplished. Now maybe you can also bring pressure to bare on these restaurants who keep their staff's gratuities and on those employers who don't pay staff insurance or pension contributions and finally, those businesses who are unlicensed or don't pay business license fees. Sort it Ezzard because no one else will!!!

    • Anonymous says:

      And it's all the other ways in which the greedy, cheating, pirating  scumbag employers in Cayman can shaft their low-paid employees that makes the $5.00 miniumum wage a complete waste of time!  If this ever makes the statue books, you can be sure that greedy business owners will find another way to claw the extra few dollars back from their employees.

    • Anonymous says:

      Ezzard – thank you. Please keep going. I have just been dealing again with one Mac’s supporters refusing to pay pensions and health even though there is no doubt they can afford to. Where does this arrogant immunity come from? Let us be an Island of laws again. Please make these people, and Mac, account for for this harm and stop it now!

  23. Anonymous says:

    The most important bill that the Goverment need to pass is these "HIGH DEMANDING BILLS THAT CUC OVER-CHARGES FROM THE POOR PEOPLE EACH MONTH.   They need to work on trying to get these consumers to cut down their ridiculous cost,all of these consumers are money hungry and the poor Caymanian people cannot afford to pay these outrageous bills anymore!!! It's a darn shame that we as Cayman people have to take the flight out to Miami or Costa Rica to shop!  

    I went into a local shop the other day owned by an expat just to buy me a pair of shoes, they had no price tag on them and the shoes had look very cheap and I thought it was cheap, it was not even a brand name shoe…the shoes look like they were worth at least $10.00…until the lady said that will be C.I $220.00…I nearly fainted!  HIGHWAY ROBBERY I SAID TO HER!!!!  I could not believe it….she will never see me back in her store again!  I would rather wear a pair of my Grandma shoes first before I buy shoes from her!

    It''s also a crying shame that any tourist that we meet up with and start to have a conversation with….. that, had ever been on a visit to Cayman would always say the same thing……

    "Omg you are from the Caymans ? Oh I love the Caymans, it is such a lovely place, they have nice friendly people and lovely beaches there…. I would love to visit there again but everything was too expensive!!!

     Instead of the Goverment worrying about passing a bill for minimum wages, they need to direct their focus on what's really best for Cayman and our children's future.  This Goverment need to shape up badand the time for them to act is now!  You have high crime rates, gangs and drugs on the streets, people missing and majority of these cases are gone unsolved.   Soooner or later Cayman is going to become like "Kingston Jamaica" and the people will have no other choice but to declare our own dependency.  So get working and stop talking, the time for ACTION is NOW!!!

    • noname says:

      Just more Talk.  Yea!   All you guys get out there and do something!  Now is the time!  What time is it?  Time for Action.  Your talking to Caymanians here.  Get real.  They won't come unless you pay them more than $5.00 an hour.

  24. Anonymous says:

    $5 per hour is not overboard. I worked as a waitress back in the 80's and I was paid $5 per hour back then. I owned a small retail outlet at the same time and paid my employees $5 per hour back then. If a business could afford $5 per hour in the 80's why cant they afford to pay that now. Just plain cheap and trying to attract slave labour from overseas.

    A minimum wage is not the only wages that government needs to be controlling. What about the businesses who advertise for employees with bachelors and masters degrees but are only paying $1800 to $2000 per month. This is also slave labour in a different form. No one goes to school to get an education and comes home to work for that type of wage – certainly not in the UK or the USA or any civilised nation so why here. Oh I forgot but this is good in the Filipines to lets get them to come here and do it. There must be industry wage standards and these must be adhered to.

  25. Appalled says:

    I am appalled that some people think that paying their helper $5 is unreasonable.  First, these women are people!  They need to buy groceries, pay their rent and CUC and go to the doctor just like everyone else.  They are expected to work longer hours than most other industries, raise your children AND clean up after you!  If you can't afford to pay your helper properly, then maybe you should do your own laundry and cook your own meals and send your child to daycare.  That's what happens in other countries.

    • Anonymous says:

      The problem is not that you pay your helper $5 per hour, but if you only need a helper for a few hours a week you pay an agency $10 to $15 per hour and more, and then discover they are paying the helper less than half of that. I would happily pay a helper $10 per hour if I could pay her directly for a few hours work. Problem is finding anyone who will do domestic work who does not need a work permit…I have tried for years and not found any way of legally employing someone directly for four hours or even eight hours a week….If Domestic workers could have a work permit which is issued to them, and then they have to register who they are working for, then maybe the exploitation of these workers would end. And before everyone rushes to say "employ a Caymanian"..I have tried, I was over the moon the one time when a Caymanian came to work for me, but all she did was try and get me to employ her friend, who was here working for someone……..(you can guess under what circumstances) onceshe realised I did not want to employ anyone in contravention of the Law, she left…after only 2 weeks. And even that was after not turning up for the second week…she had the nerve to send her friend instead of her, without checking with me, after i had already said no…..

       

      Anyway my point is, for an Agency to cover its overheards and pay someone a decent wage just would price them out of the market for middle income families who need a part-time helper….So some market reality is needed, for a Domestic Worker to earn a decent wage they need to be able to work directly; either for someone who can pay them for a decent full-time position or be able to work for more than one employers on a part-time basis. The Work Permit sharing does not work for most either….usually, someone may need to work for five different clients a week to make a half-decent wage..could be $400 a week for 8 hrs a day 5 days a week? Imagine that is only $200 a week at $5 an hour…ludicrous….

       

       

  26. Anonymous says:

    This is not going to affect gratuities and should not affect gratuities. Gratuities are sums paid to a service employer for the service employee and should not even be looked at by the employer. There are a number of service employers in the Cayman Islands who do not charge or collect gratuities and they therefore pay more than $5 per hour and they are not struggling so why should the ones collecting gratuities feel that they are going to struggle. They wont it is just an excuse.

  27. noname says:

    Well done,

     

    I hope now all those lawless employers respect the law.We must start at some where.

    It would be nice that the memebers of parliment try to raise this with the rising cost of life in our country.

    Now employers you need to understand this does not mean you have to pay your housekeeper and engineer $5 per hour but it tells you what the limoit is.

    Funny these rates that we pay dont exist in any modern and developed country similar to ours, so why are we doing this.

    Recently I know of a very qualified young proffessional that came to the island to work for a caymanian brother whom if he knew his history would not have came to our island.

    He was cheated on what he was paid under paid and abused to all levels f the word.

    The guy only wanted more from him and not compensateing the young man.

    You know what the guy did ? he left that employer.Yet the employer wants to know why.

    Stupid man get a brain or heart transplant.now with more laws in place you might find your self in a prsion cell for your bad habits, you know who you are .

    Fear God and the Laws of the Land, you excuse for a human.

    Read and understand and repent for what you have done and cotinue to do.make peace and pay your debts from the banks to employees.

     

     

  28. Anonymous says:

    WoW!!!  Slavery days are here again!  I wont even make my darn Cat work for that amount!!!  

    • Anonymous says:

      Then your not woth that amount per hour are you?  Stay home with your cat and let those that want to work work.

  29. Anonymous says:

    Thanks God this is being put into place. I know of some workers who receive only $3.00 per hour. This is so ascenine and this is people taking advantage of others.Hey,

    Security Guards who are put into place to protect, are only being paid $ 5.00 per hour! These guys ar ein a dangerous job.Also Dive Instructors who have people's lives in their handsare only paid $6.00 per hour! Disgusting. Yet the dive companies charge like $90 for a 2 hour dive.. What an imbalnce and slavery mentality.

    So good on you Ezzard for doing this people.

     

  30. Its not about money says:

    What you people do not understand is this, when you treat your employees bad, they  F*&^%K you up one way or the other.  They steal from you bit by bit, whether it is in your  restaurant or supermarket. They threaten your children. sleep with your husband and watch  XXX TV all day, leave the baby in dirty pampers, and begin to clean house when its time for you to come home.  Treat people well and be at ease at  work.  Its not about the money.

    • Anonymous says:

      My experience is they 8/10 of the 'helpers' steal from you whether you treat them good or not

  31. Anonymous says:

    One of the things that most worry me:  the domestic workers earning this minimum wage are, in many cases, raising our children.

  32. Submitted by Anonymous on Thu, 09/08/2011 - 22:32 says:

    I find both your tone and your insinuations offensive.  One of them has already serving at a relatives restaurant for $4.50 an hour, and the other has been unable to secure employment despite applying for several hard labour jobs.  Pray tell me (from your nice air conditioned office) – would you work outside in the hot sun for 10 hours a day, with  no pension, no healthcare and the cost of your work permit deducted from a salary of $3 an hour? 

    I thought so…

    Oh by the way, I am an expat too, and I know I wouldn't do that either.

    • Anonymous says:

      I have done it early on when I had no skill and was happy for it.  Thats how I earned my skill. And yes I am an expat too.  Just not a lazy one.

  33. apprentice says:

    wow… I can only imagine the new tax on employers and more unskilled workers unemployed. Yes, we need a fair wage for all workers, but they need to do something fast with the cost of living.

    • Anonymous says:

      What has this got to do with the cost of living for goodness sake it is only $5 per hour. There is a minimum wage in the USA and it is more than $5 per hour and they live without whining about the cost of living. The only area going to have problems is going to be for domestic helpers. Persons who make $5 per hour cannot be expected to pay $5 per hour. This is going to put more strain on the government in the form of assistance from social services as single parents cannot afford this when this is what they are making themselves.

  34. FREE the people says:

    I am ashamed for some of you.  Crying because you'll have to spend a few more dollars on your "helpers".  How do you think people live on less than $250 a week !?   I'm sorry the days of the plantations are over.  ALL PEOPLE deserve RESPECT.

    • Anonymous says:

      I also find it unfair that utility costs are more expensive here than it is where they come from, but thats not the point

    • Dred says:

      Let me be clear as crystal here….

      I agree that many are being paid unreasonable wages BUT let me also be clear in saying that some of those people will end up worse off.

      Tell me this. If you had the following options which one would you choose:

      Option #1 – Helper paying CI$840/month wages, CI$100 Health & CI$42 Pensions for a total of CI$982.00 – Plus permit fees and hasle of dealing with immigration plus many aren't really skilled in training only basically care for the child.

      Option #2 – Day Care paying CI$500 to CI$700 a month with only the hassle of dropping them off.

      Which would you choose?

      Now let's keep in mind that many of the staff at the pre-schools are trained teachers.

      Now tell me how many helpers do you think will loose their jobs? How many do you think will say "I don't care because I don't want to loose my source of income no matter how small".

      PLEASE, PLEASE DO NOT GET ME WRONG……

      I am not saying that they don't deserve higher wages I am only saying that when it all comes down to it people are going to choose 7 or 8 times out of 10 the cheapest options once child safety is of no additional concern.

      At $5/hr Domestic Helpers will simply not be the cheapest option UNLESS you have more than one child being taken care of.

      • Anonymous says:

        Someone else has already pointed out that in reality, those employing helpers get a lot more than childcare.  The helper is generally caring for multiple children AND cleaning, and sometimes cooking meals, doing shopping, running errands etc.  You need to double or triple the cost of daycare if you have more than one child, and then pay someone to clean your house on top of that, so in fact, a helper represents a much better value overall.  

      • aNON says:

        I am guessing the rich aristocrats voted against and the poor people who WOULD LOVE TO PAY THEIR HELPERS MORE BUT CAN'T voted for….

         

    • Anonymous says:

      Because for helpers:

      • That is not their only job
      • Live-ins don’t pay rent, food, utilities etc
      • It is an unskilled job and should be paid accordingly
      • Perks come with the job that is outside of the actual monetary value

       

      The issue is not really about people’s helpers but about the increase in the cost of living as most places like supermarkets, restaurants, gas stations, hotels the service industry overall etc pay below this minimum wage.  Increasing the pay for the employer increases the cost for the customer.  This will drive the prices up, tourists and expats alike will not be willing to pay the price as it is cheaper elsewhere.  However, sometimes people are willing to pay more for better service.  Now….are we saying that we are going to provide better service? NO, we are just paying people more money to do the same BS.  It’s not worth it.  If there is a mass exodus of the expatriate community, tourists numbers decrease due to the cost, then locals will have to leave to find better jobs elsewhere.  This will leave behind the people that wouldn’t have taken the job at $3 much less the minimum wage of $5.  What will happen then?  Cayman sleepy town again?  Ezzard do you have a brain?!!!!

      • Anonymous says:

        Cry cry cry.  Whine whine whine. blame blame blame.  If its not worth it to you don't do it.  simple.  Just do it yourself.

        • Truth says:

          The person said it was not about domestic workers, but it was about the cost of living due to the increase in the price of labour.  Apparently you are not able to intepret a simple blog.  Maybe you should get a helper to take care of the cleaning and cooking at home for you while you go out and get yourself an education.

  35. Anonymous says:

    two way street here employers should be willing to pay and train caymanians and caymanians have to be willing to work for $5..

     

    • Anonymous says:

      As a Caymanian I have worked in the tourism industry in the late 70's and early 80's before going into the financial industry for $5.00 per hour loved it and if I have to go back there to remain in my country I will gladly do it.  As a matter of fact I did not apply to the financial institution that I left my hospitality job to work at they came and offered me the job paying 5 times more salary training provided as well.  I dare to say that our young people will never have this opportunity as long as work permits are given to everyone that wants one.  I have no problem with companies being given work permits but in my opinion they should have to pay for it.  If unskilled permit would begin at $6,000.00 per annum, semi skilled $12,000.00, clerical $18,000.00, lower management $20,000.00, middle management $24,000 and professional and management $36,000.00 with  a 10% increase per year and without the rollover policy.  This country's financial woes would be over so would its unemployment  and immigration and other social problems. 

  36. Anonymous says:

    There are many jobs in this world that are not worth $5 an hour. Those jobs will simply disappear if the employer is required to pay more than the job is worth. Wishing and hoping otherwise will not make any difference.

    • Anonymous says:

      And what jobs are they?  Pray tell.

    • Anonymous says:

      And there is many jobs that are worth $5.00.  I started out in one and it was a great way to get into the job market for someone fresh out of school and no skills.

      Of course there will be those who think its not worth it and for an employer they won't be worth it so it works out.  An employer really just wants someone who is worth the pay no matter what.  If its not good enough for you than stay home and let a good worker have the job.  Wishing and hoping will not get you job skills but working your way up will.

  37. Anonymous says:

    This is not for Caymanians.  Caymanians weren't willing to do the job before at whatever was offered and they won't do it now at $5 an hour.  You could raise it to $20 an hour for minimum wage and you still won't get Caymanians doing the job. As the $20 an hour will be the new $5.  It is not the money it is the TYPE of job.  The jobs that pay this are the service jobs and lower level, lower skilled jobs, which the average Caymanian will not do as they have been socially and culturally taught it is beneath them.

    Ezzard needs to sit down and stop pretending he is about Cayman. Want to do something for the Caymanians, be a mentor and tell them to go to school.  Teach the Caymanians work ethics from the time they are in primary school and tell them to persevere through all the hard work.  Things don't come on a silver platter with a silver spoon.

    Minimum wage is another way to tell people they are entitled.

     

    • Anonymous says:

      Caymanian were not willing to do the jobs, I guess that is the reason why you were recuited as an indenture servant and have now graduated with rights and knowledge on what and who we are as a people.  I don't blame you for this, Caymanians deserve just what they get from you and people like you.  We should not have let you come here in the first place wegot along and did fine without.  There is an old say amongst Caymanians which goes something like this "dish rag turn table cloth".  Since you know so much about Caymanians show me a real (native) person 40 or older that as not at some point worked in the tourism industry, know what you cannot because there is not a single one, so they goes your flawed sing song theory, that you know nothing about.

  38. Anonymous says:

    Coming to a political stage near you VERY SOON… Who will be the next politician to push to RAISE the minimum wage.

    Cayman's new political football.

     

    This bill has accomplished several things:

    Raise the cost of living on everyone (including those who are the supposed benificary of the increase)

    Has done absolutely nothing to raise the standard of living of those who are supposed to benifit from this "raise"

    Has created a political football now for self serving politicians to use raising the minimum wage as a vessel to buy votes. Which of course, leaving local businesses and eventually the consumer to pay for those votes.

     

    Despite this being PROVED around the world, small minded thinking, self serving and emotionally driven policies has prevailed once again. 

    Thank you Ezzard. 

     

  39. Anonymous says:

    So why in the hell would you do this now when there is an economic crisis?  You have just driven up the prices of everything as now companies will pass on the increased cost to the customer.  The customers cannot afford it then they will go elsewhere where things are cheaper.  This is the stupidest possible amendment.

    Then next, how are families supposed to afford their nannies now? Oh, I know! Go to social services!  Oh yeah you really thought this through.  Obviously Ezzard you never took an economics class nor did you take a sociology class. 

    Salary should be based on supply and demand not some artificial price.  As much as I think that Mac is crazy.  I hope his is crazy enough to turn this around.  If he wants real inward investment and more expats coming to the island to work and live, he better scrap this.  As people will realise very quickly the cost of living here is not worth the sun.  Once salaries have to increase due to the high cost of living, businesses will eventually leave.

    Ezzard think things through next time.  The few that you are trying to help needs to help themselves in other ways by educating themselves to get better jobs that will pay more.

    Ezzard you are an idiot!

    • Anonymous says:

      This does not affect the cost of living in Cayman as much as the increase in fuel duties. Fuel duties touch on everything. This flat rate only affects a few businesses that are currently paying less than $5.

       

      As for eating out at restaurants, and other luxury activities, etc, if they are paying less than $5 for waiters and servers, etc., and try to raise their prices because of this increase then they will see a fall in patronage and may even go out of business, so i doubt this will have a huge negative impact on the public from that perspective.

       

      This only becomes an issue with the true necessities that we consume, but I kinda doubt that many of those businesses are paying less than $5 per hour now.

    • Anonymous says:

      "Salary should be based on supply and demand not some artificial price. "

      With the endless supply of cheap $3.50 per hr foreign labour that oppressive employers insist must pay their own work permit, health insurance and pension and without any vacation the rules of "supply and demand" are not working.

      Congratulations Mr. Miller, job well done.

      Nuff said.

    • Anonymous says:

      The operative word "Supply and Demand" how is that for you Idiot? No need to explain more.

    • Kwik Kwestion says:

      People should not have children they can't afford.

    • Anonymous says:

      How are families supposed to affor their nannies now? lol. Ask not what you can do for your nannie, but what your nannie can do for you.

  40. I Care says:

    With all the comments on this about its bad and good etc, I beleive the only people that will appreciate this are those working for Less than $5.00 per hour. Those of us that are earning way more have no place to comment on this but to say It is good and a start.

    $5.00 per hour is not much and you can hardly live on this i am sure but you can eat and pay some bills. People stop finding fault in everthing and I know that many peole commenting here are locals and expats alike , but here this, if you are an expat if you were working back in your home land what would you work for per hour? Caymanians it is a start, don't complain but give thanks and hope any pray that the law works  in favour of all.

    God bless each and everyone

  41. Anonymous says:

    I realize that Ezzard is the golden boy of CNS but wouldn't a more appropiate title to this story be, " Cayman wins minimum wage"?

    Oh I forgot the UDP voted for this and that might give them some of Ezzards glory.

  42. Anonymous says:

    Good – long time coming – I hate seeing people being taken advantage of and now the law hopefully will ensure that this does not happen.  Yes, costs might go up in businesses like restaurants – but lets face it – if we can afford to eat out then we are doing OK.  The way I view it is I will happily tighten my belt a little if it means that less people are living in poverty or a family that was previously struggling can now feel confident of putting food on the table or paying their bills.

    Someone commented on the cost of this versus day care but be honest – most people who have a helper to  care fortheir kids have more than one child and also has them do the cleaning – so in fact you should be comparing $840 per month against – maybe 2 daycares (if 2 kids) plus a cleaner……now how does that work out for you?  Still worth hirng your helper even at $5 per hour.

    Personally I am delighted – if people work, let them earn enough to survive and feed their families.

  43. Anonymous says:

    When will this become effective??? 

  44. PoppyCock says:

    I smell bovine excretement, this bunch of equus asinus couldn't enforce it if they wanted to.

    Got pension?

  45. peter milburn says:

    Another new law to try and enforce.We cannot even come close to enforcing the ones we have on the books now let alone add another one.

  46. Anonymous says:

    $5.00 an hour is slave labour.

  47. Anonymous says:

    minimum wage is the last thing this economy needs…..

    jobs will be lost and cost of living for everyone will go throught the roof……this place is doomed….

    • Anonymous says:

      I'm agree with you;GOOD idea for minimum wage but this is the wrong TIME.  Think people cant get a job now ! just wait things are going to get worse when this takes affect people are going to be laid off. I work for the most profitable Company in Grand Cayman  and they  haven't givien a raise in three years.

  48. Anonymous says:

    I bought a pint of Dean's Easy Fat Free Fresh Milk from Kirk's Supermarket yesterday.  It cost me $5.19.  That will last my family of four one day.  Times 7 days = $36.33 a week JUST FOR MILK.  If I was being paid $5.00 an hour, it would mean I'd have to work over 7-hours — i.e., a full day — just to give my 3 children a full glass of milk every day. 

    Those who have proposed $5.00 an hour are not just out of touch with the cost of living in Cayman, they're on another planet!  Moral victory for Mr. Miller?  Sure enough. Providing a realistic minimum wage for a single mother with three children? Not even close. 

    Just out of interest, the minimum wage in the UK (where the cost of living is significantly lower and a pint of milk costs under £1.90 at the most = around CI$2.51) is £5.80, which is around CI$7.65.

    • Boston Tea Party says:

      Your prices for UK milk are way out.  In Tesco, you can get 6 Imperial pints for GBP1.99.  However, it is home produced and does not have to be imported.  Even so, CI$5 plus for a pint of milk seems crazy even in Cayman, and you certainly wouldn't get 3 glasses of milk from a US pint.  Are you sure you didn't mean quart or gallon?

      • Anonymous says:

        You're right it is 1/2-gallon.   But my argument remains:  $5.00/hr min wage is just not enough.

    • Anonymous says:

      So 5.27, why not buy half a gallon of IGA milk, which is four pints, for around $2.75 from Fosters? That way, instead of costing your family $36.33 per week by your calculations, it would only set you back around $4.81 for the week, or less than one hour's work at the minimum wage. You can check the math.

  49. The problem with that is says:

    Increasing the pay for immigrants just gives them more to send home and to buy mufflers at Tony's Toys, while increasing the payroll cost for struggling businesses.  I FULLY support a minimum wage, but like a lot of things, it may not work in Cayman because of the foolish decisions and lack of planning that took place during our development boom.

  50. Anonymous says:

    I agree with the spirit of this new law.

     

    Unforturnately it is a law that will probably not be enforced. Many indentured slaves will continue to be abused by employers who:

    – deduct health care from wages and do not pay the health care premiums

    – deduct pension from wages and do not contribute to a pension plan

    – force the indentured slaves to work long hours with no over-time or even straight time

    – deport the indentured slave immediately if they complain about being abused

    Immoral employers will pay less than the minimum wage and simply add the infractions to the existing list of abuses. Woe to the indentured slave who complains.

     

    The real evil is the work permit system that puts the work permit in the hands of the employer. The work permit system does not protect Caymanian workers, it guarantees that Caymanian workers cannot compete for entry level jobs. Immoral employers cannot abuse Caymanians the same way they abuse the expat indentured slaves.

    • Anonymous says:

      And don't forget the common and illegal practice of employers paying for work permits and then deducting this cost from employees wages too.  There's plenty of it about – particularly in construction.

  51. Anonymous says:

    I thought slavery was 9 and hour so this is sub-slavery?

  52. Anonymous says:

    It is finally official:   Businesses can not with the law in their hands, underpay their employees.

    800$ a month ?    Even if both parents work, they can still not afford housing and childcare.

    And reviewing once every 5 years is a joke. Many countries do this once a year.

    This is still cayman, a banana republic, 100 years behind, suffering from increased crime and on its way to become a third world country.

    A joke, that is what it is.

     

    • Anonymous says:

      23:03 you took the words right out of my mouth! I'll say no more.

    • Anonymous says:

      I think this is too little. Not the $5 but salary ranges should be dictated for various jobs. This will stop people coming from other countries and getting jobs for half the salaries. Then complain that they are being underpaid.

      It will be interesting to see the impact on jobs such as helpers.

      There are two levels of helpers.

      The first usually hired at very low wages. These are the developing families that cannot afford high priced helpers but both parents have to work.

      The other will not be impacted by this at all. These are the higher salaried helpers, usually to expats on contract. Some of these contracts give extra for a halper to look after their children.

      as for the overall impact, expect an increase in cost of living in some areas. Businesses have a set profit margin and they are not giving it up. They will simply increase cost of services to the public.

    • Anonymous says:

      And what it will always be.

  53. Anonymous says:

    It might seem hard to appreciate this small minimum wage to some. But for those people working in retail and at hotels only making $2.50 & $3.50 per hour, this is significant. I've been there and it's hard. $5.00 plus the grats will be a big help to these people. Let's be happy for them and not just bring up the negative points.

    • Anonymous says:

      Now lets see what happens when companies don't comply??? Remember the CI Government is great at passing laws BUT NOT ENFORCING THEM!!!

    • Anonymous says:

      and do you understand the impact on business and the economy when you increase labour costs by 60%???

      • Anonymous says:

        So what are you saying, that your workers should take the impact and not your business?  SMH.

  54. Anonymous says:

    Now the the $5.00 minimum wage has been passed.Let ask ourselves some questions.

    1) what is going to happen  in regards to CUC will l  there  be  price  control in place? 

    2) why is  the government  allowing CUC  to increase  fuel cost when there is  not an increase at the gasoline pumps..In July CUC fuel charge was $5.05 per kwh cost….August it is charged at $5.17per kwh

    3) The government said that they have $25million surplus- great news—-when are we going to see a  reduction in the fuel tax  to coincide with the $5.00 per hour rate?

    4) Water Authority  –another  rip off –  are we going to see a  reduction in their water  rates to coincide with the $5.00per hour rate? the people who make $5.00 cant afford to pay their water bills.

    Sorry Ezzard, you might think you won -this is just the begining of sorrow for a lot of people – where there is no  price control – minimum wage will perish.

     

    • CaymanFisting says:

      No doubt you bring up excellent points regarding the recent spike in CUC and water authority costs, I can’t help but question if you slept thru economics class. Why would an increase in wages paid correlate to a decrease in the cost of utilities??? Don’t get me wrong, I am all for a minimum wage and believe strongly it should be higher than $5, but explain to me why a supposed increase in disposable income would result in a lowering of utility cost.

    • Anonymous says:

      In response to question number 2, particularly the section that states "In July CUC fuel charge was $5.05 per kwh cost….August it is charged at $5.17per kwh. Now let's apply your rates ($5.05 and $5.17 per kwh) to my consumption for this month – 1,334 kwh (which I think is about the average consumption in Cayman). 1,334 times 5.05 equals $6,736.70 – JUST FOR FUEL (according to your numbers). Now let's add in the flat rate (maybe CUC calls it something else) of 0.1039 per kwh. So that's 1,334 times 0.1039 equals $138.60. So my total bill, according to your fuel estimates, should have been $6,875.30 for one month. Seeing as I only make $5,534 per month, I think I would be up a creek without a paddle on a monthly basis. But thankfully for me, my bill was only $460.99 (I wish I could attach a copy for your perusal) and that's because fuel is NOT anywhere remotely close to where you say it is!!!! You, like so many others are quick to "report" your marl road estimations or what "Joe Blow" told you on the side of the road. Me, on the other hand, operate off of facts and certainly don't go shooting my mouth off unless I know what I'm talking about. Had you done the simple calculations (as I have done above) before opening your mouth you would have realized how outrageous, ridiculous and stupid (and any other synonyms for those words) your numbers were. I can only draw one logical conclusion from your post – YOU ARE NOT ELIGIBLE FOR MINIMUM WAGE.
       

  55. Anonymous says:

    $3 or $5 and hour how can you live on that?

    • Anonymous says:

      You share a room and toilet with 8 other people.

    • Anonymous says:

      The same way all those poor souls who are getting payed that and less have been doing it . By living within your means.  Unless you feel that you are some how intitiled to get more for doing less.  Then your screwed.

  56. aNON says:

    How this all plays out will be interesting….

    Let's look at domestic helpers for instance….

    $5 per hour x 40 hrs (8am to 4pm x 5 days) = CI$200 x 4.2wks per month = CI$840/mnth

    Now looking at that I would say this…..

    Many people who have domestic helpers will not be able to afford this as some of these people are making maybe just say $2,000 per month and they have to pay rent, water, CUC, feed family. Families will be very strained and single parents will HAVE to put children in a day care which they thought was extremely high and why they got a helper to take care of their young children in the first place.

    Now what I see happening is many people say with one child saying. "Huuummmm, day care is running say CI$500 to CI$700 why would I want to spend $840?" So I am guessing this will be a huge benefit to daycares Island wide but CIG will loose many domestic helpers OR and I can see this……many helpers will say "Screw them I need the work". Many employers probably won't want to budge from the rates they currently pay since they hired them under that condition.

    Keep in mind this is not even including health and pensions.

    Now turning to another note….

    What about waitresses where some make only say $3.50 per hour plus gratuities. I am guessing businesses will reformat their business compensations. Many employers may well forego any gratuities now and say $5 wages it is now. Can't say Waitresses will be too happy cause they probably make a bunch more than that with grats.

    Please do not get me wrong I do believe many are being taken advantage of but there are truly many issues that will come out of this and we really need to see what the whiplash effect of this will be ESPECIALLY IN THESE HARD ECONOMIC TIMES.

    Let's take a close look at all that has happened so far to be able to rationalize whether this is truly the right time to do this.

    First and foremost is we were all impacted by a recession which might well be the worst of our times then, to make matters worse our "Brilliant" leader who really should have read a book on economics if he can, opted to do the following stupidity:

    – Increase in duties across the board basically – Increased cost of living to all, making money that much more of a premium.

    – Increases in business expenses such as business licenses, work permits, etc – This was like a death blow to many small business and the final straw to many larger global businesses who opted to just move to a cheaper business location. This lead to one of the highest unemployment rates in Cayman's history. Which in turn is costing the government in social service handouts.

    – Increase in gas tax which has not only impacted the business directly but indirectly in their utilities, cost of materials, etc. – I guess there had to be the perverbial nail in the coffin so to speak. This was it. Or was it??

    Now here we are potentiall raising business expenses and personal expenses again when:

    a) Some business are already under heavy duress possibly weighing out closing.

    b) Some families have possibly one parent unemployed or one member not making as much as the business cut back on hours.

    I don't know. Maybe this is something we should have held for when we broke past the recession and people were all back out to work and businesses were starting to take off again. It kind of seems to me the timing might be an issue but hey I could be wrong and this all works out smoothly. I pray it does. Many businesses might not be affected at all. Many only minor. Restaurants and Domestic helpers will be higher impacts.

    • X Pat says:

      Don't worry it won't be enforced, if it ever gets on the statute book that is. There is no real will in the UDP to pass this legislation and the only reason the vote was unanimous was so no-one looked like a mean S-O-B to the poor of our nation.

    • Anonymous says:

      The going rate for afull time helper right now is $250 a week ($50 day, either $6.5 an hour for 8 hours, or more likely $5 for a 10 hour day). If you are paying less than that you either shouldn't have a helper as you are truly taking the indentured servant thing too far.

       

    • Anony Mous says:

      Don't you think that the Domestic Helper who would be getting $840 per month have just as equal bills to meet each month just as those who earn $2,000.00. I have never seen any where that CUC, supermarkets, schools, stores or any where else, has a special rate for people on one pay scale and another for those of another pay scale. If you can not afford to hire some one, please don't. I have even seen people who complain of not having any money to pay their domestic helpers for weeks some times months go out and purchase a second or third motor vehicle and have great difficulty meeting their monthly obligations. Basicaly, hang your hat where you can reach it just as how the people earning $5 per hour does. If you think that you can afford a helper, by all means do, but rember that they are as much a human as you are. Don't be selfish.

  57. Anonymous says:

    I'm glad he won a minimum wage, but $5 an hour is still so low….. pay people better for the jobs they do!

  58. Anonymous says:

    Ezzard for Premier!!!!!

    • Eye on the X says:

      22:06  yes, I wish Cayman would do just that.  They talk about MacKeva Bush, but if Ezzard or Alden Mclaughlin or Arden McLean, sits in that chair then you all will have what una so deserve.  Mackeva Bush is just a pinch of salt comparing to those three, who is a full box.  But I think the time soon come for the Caymanian people to make another  fool of themselvesat the Polls.  If you all think that MacKeva Bush is so bad, then put back in that PPM group including the extension from North Side.  Do that and see where the hell everyone will end up..

  59. Anonymous says:

    Ezzard wins again! Who said independent members were ineffective was wrong. Thank you EZzard for doing something for the caymanian people. You have earned our vote.

  60. Anonymous says:

    Halleblinkingluliah – now lets see it ENFORCED please.  Mr Anglin, in other countries to reduce an existing wage to the minimum would be criminal – write this into the legislation.  Trinidad have just raised their minimum wage, and there are plenty of other existing models to learn from.  Please do not procrastinate on this issue further by coming up with lame excuses not to bring about and enforce this much needed legislation.

  61. Anonymous says:

    Yeah, finally UDP agree to something, but only because their popularity was in jeopardy so they are now trying to win back the people's favor.

  62. Anonymous says:

    Great!  We will see a difference now.  When people make more money, they spend more.  

    • Adam Smith says:

      Nonsense. This law is inflationary and will increase the cost of living. It will also result in the loss of jobs.

      • Anonymous says:

        I agree but disagree, its a bandaid solution for bad immigration policy

      • Anonymous says:

        It will also rid us of the cancer that is very alive and well in this place – slave labour  foreigners being brought in from abroad to live in diabolical earnings… and no I am not Caymanian.

        • Anonymous says:

          cancer???? …. cheap labour is the life blood of cayman..you will die without it…..

    • BS says:

      You mean they will send more money home!

  63. Anonymous says:

    lets say for arguments sake, that the minimum wage in caymanis currently $3 per hour (excluding grats!!!)…….

    can anyone explain to me why caymanians prefer making $0 per hour to $3 per hour??????

  64. Anonymous says:

    more wonderland stuff…….. they will take every oppportunity to ignore the real reasons why caymanians refuse employment…….

  65. Anonymous says:

    absolute rubbish…window dressing at its best….. caymanians will not work for $5 per hour…. caymaninas have no interest in doing the lower paid jobs……

    • Anonymous says:

      Off the top of my head, I know several Caymanians who would be happy to work in hard labour for $5 an hour, but have been rejected by employers who would rather ship in labour at $3 an hour.  Whilst I don't deny there are some who appear to have no interest in working at all, I don't think its fair to generalise.

      • Anonymous says:

        nonsense…. why didn't caymanians take a job for $3 per hour??

        how is $0 per hour better than $3 per hour??

        • Off the top of my head says:

          Because its an insult to pay someone such a disgusting rate for hard labour out in the hot sun for 10 hours a day.  They can make better money and be more appreciated for doing odd jobs, fishing and helping others in the community.

          You are a typical example of the type of expat I am about to address in my more substantive post which I am about to submit following this reply.  People like you royally p1$$ me off.

      • Anonymous says:

        Great!  Now they can get a job.