Civil servants shouldn’t be silenced, says association

| 24/02/2012

james watler.jpg(CNS): In the wake of the publication of a new policy allowing public sector workers to sign petitions, the Cayman Islands Civil Service Association issued a statement on Thursday welcoming the clarity provided by the deputy governor. Most civil servants will now be able to sign most petitions and very senior or sensitive post holders can do so with clearance from their chief officers. The CICSA said government employees must have the ability to sign a petition as it was crucial in the overall democratic process and they should not be silenced. CICSA President James Watler urged the members to familiarize themselves with the new policy. (Photo Dennie Warren Jr)

“As responsible members of society we have valid opinions on issues faced by both individual and country and our voices should not be silenced,” he said “This new policy now assists us in defining and making clearer what is allowed or not allowed and by whom.”

Watler said that over the years the issue of the rights of government workers to sign had been of grave concern to all civil servants and the CICSA management council had assisted with the drafting and vetting of the petition policy in an effort to create a policy document that would officially clarify the signing of petitions. 

“Of course there are some areas that we need to monitor as we go forward but despite this we do have a much clearer understanding of where we stand in relation to this issue,” Watler said about the document released on Tuesday. 

“We are aware that we must have certain rights and responsibilities as we do in the electoral process and the ability to sign a petition is crucial in the overall democratic process of these islands,” he added.

Watler advised public sector employee to ensure they understand what is required of them and what their rights now are so that they could participate in any petition that is being circulated at any time.

The new policy comes at a crucial time as a petition is being circulated aimed at triggering a people initiated referendum, as set out in the constitution, requesting a national poll on one man, one vote before the 2013 election. The new policy should pave the way for all civil servants to be able to sign this petition if they so wish.

See related story here and new policy document on civil servants and petitions below.

Vote in the CNS poll: If the petition for one man, one vote triggers a referendum, how soon should this take place?

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  1. nauticalone says:

    Well overdue!

    Civil Servants should now utilize the same basic Human/Civil Rights needed for Democracy to properply be effected.

  2. Reality Check says:

    How about they get political rights in return for a 5% pay cut?  Ridiculous rules and ridiculous wage problems managed at the same time.

  3. Anonymous says:

    I felt like I was living in Cuba or north Korea for a while, I am glad we can voice our rights as a human & not feel likes cage animal!!!!

  4. Anonymous says:

    Empty vessels make the most noise.

  5. Anonymous says:

    So – theyonly issue a strong statement on the matter after govt has decided on the issue??

    Pathetic representation!

    • Anonymous says:

      Typical Caymanians, they can only follow those who have the balls and back bones to get things done for them….Thank you Donnie and Franz…you are the exceptionals.

      Do you notice how they hide behind doors, and bushes and chit chat amongst themselves.

      Not enough common sense to know that all they have to do is, retain a lawyer and lobby their Government for changes…"a lost and backward nation". And I'm talking of the white collar Caymanians to the taxi drivers.

      Learn your history of the American red Indians, they lobbied Congress, and now they all receive a pay cheque… monthly. Not like the red indians… we don't need hand out for land stolen, we want amendments to the F@@ed laws that making us fight amongst each other.

      Caymanians, we wont get change by asking for someone's head on a platter, we have to lobby for changes. For the last 38 years I have watched the changing of the Guards,  only to see them carry out the same LAWS,POLICIES,and REGULATIONS. and each set of guards makes it harder for the  Caymanians to survive. Do you really think… should you get Mac's head on a platter  anything will change??? no it wont, the snow ball has been rolling down hill since 1970 and it keeps getting bigger. you get my drift?






    • Anonymous says:

      You  Cayamnian seamen!… sound familier?? the old shipping days. 30 strong Caymanian men decide to take matters to the captain of the ship. Crowd start walking to the bridge, leader looks around, he alone is on the cat walk, heading to the bridge. Nothing changed, and will never change, untill the multicultural socity gets big enough. meaning, we do not have the balls!

    • Anonymous says:

      Thats the only "kind" Cayman has.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Any restriction on the right to sign a petition would be a breach of basic human rights of civil servants.  That extends to the need to need to get clearance which is an unjustified obstruction to political rights.

    • Anonymous says:

      Would you expect anything less, when the donkey can't bray.   Poor leadersship at the head and limited mentality in the UDP.  God help us, because no one else can.

    • Anonymous says:

      Welcome to the third world.  Are you lost?

    • Anonymous says:

      Absolutely agree.   The requirements are onerous.  I agree that chief officers, deputy chief officers, and agency heads should be responsible for petitions primarily targeted at their minister, however it is an unnecessary burdon to require a 48 hour notification if a civil servant without a conflict of interest desires to exercise their constitutional right.