Archive for January, 2013

Gender gaps and income

| 29/01/2013 | 33 Comments

In the Cayman Islands, between 1989 and 1999 females’ mean income almost doubled, compared with a 74.6% increase for males. However, the absolute value of this increase was still less than that for males and the gender income gap actually grew during that period. It was not until the new millennium that the increase in females’ mean income narrowed this gap, from 24% in 1999 to 16.6% in 2010.

Data from the 2010 Census of Population and Housing reveal that females also earned less money than their male counterparts at every level of education and within many occupations and industries. The widest gap was found in elementary occupations, where a female earned an average of 64¢ for every $1.00 that a male earned. University-educated women earned $17,431 less than university-educated men per year, which added up to a difference of over 23%.

While this gap has closed over time, the continuing difference in the average income of males and females reflects lingering inequalities in our society and it is important to address the root causes of inequality in order to create a better and more equal future. When males and females have the same opportunities to earn income there are positive effects for women, for children and families, for the economy, and for society as a whole.

Direct and indirect discrimination

Direct discrimination in income can occur when men and women receive different pay for the same work or when they have different job requirements for the same pay. These discrepancies may be based on sex or on gender characteristics, which are qualities that define what we think of as “femininity” and “masculinity”. For example, an employer may assume that a woman wouldn’t be able to take on a difficult new task because females are not as good at complex problem-solving, or may believe that only a man should be promoted to a management position because males are inherently better leaders.

Indirect discrimination in income is even more complicated and can result from a number of different factors that people often don’t consider. For example, women tend to work fewer hours than men and takecareer breaks because of the unequal burden of unpaid domestic work and caring for children and the elderly. Additionally, jobs traditionally associated with men tend to pay better than traditionally female jobs for the same level of skill required and irrespective of the level of qualification.

Stereotypes and prejudices

Women’s work is undervalued in part because they are seen as having primary responsibility for unpaid work in the home and caregiving. This channels females into similar occupations and industries, such as domestic work, education and human services. The skills required in these roles and “feminine talents” like caring and nurturing are not rewarded or well-paid. Once the gender division of labour is established it encourages women to choose these occupations. Employers often further reinforce the division by not adapting work environments to suit men and women or by favouring one sex over the other.

Women also tend to be at a disadvantage in the labour market because some behaviours — like self-promotion and negotiation — that work for men and lead to higher salaries and career progression may actually backfire on women and cause them to be penalised when they are perceived differently.

When we have expectations or feelings about people based their sex or gender we may act in ways that negatively affect them. Often we don’t even think about these stereotypes or prejudices and hurt or disadvantage someone without even realising it. We might think that we are simply behaving in ways that accurately reflect the realities or abilities of men and women, but we are actually discriminating and reinforcing inequality.

Promoting gender equality

Gender gaps in part reflect the outcomes of discriminatory social processes. Therefore, valuing girls and boys and men and women equally and promoting equality of opportunity in all areas is important to minimise discrimination that leads to and reinforces inequality.

As individuals we can all strive to recognise stereotypes or prejudices we may have about the qualities or capabilities of males and females and what roles, career paths and other personal choices are “suitable” for each sex.

When we are more conscious of these assumptions we can choose how we respond – within our families and home lives; in the workplace as employers and employees; as parents, teachers and mentors to children; and in other relationships and positions that we have and hold. We can choose to act in ways that promote equality.

In 2013, make it a New Year’s Resolution to promote gender equality. Don’t stereotype.

Under the Gender Equality Law, 2011, it is illegal for employers to discriminate on the basis of sex, gender, marital status or pregnancy in employment and related matters or to pay unequal remuneration to men and women performing work of equal value. If you believe you have been discriminated against you can make a complaint to the Gender Equality Tribunal. For more information, please contact or 244-3226 or visit

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Victims all survive major road smash

| 29/01/2013 | 18 Comments

(CNS):  Two drivers and three young passengers all escaped serious injury on Heroes Day during a major collision in Breakers. Police are now looking for witnesses to the two vehicle crash which happened at around 4.20pm Monday. A silver Honda Civic was travelling towards Bodden Town from East End when the driver lost control on a right bend and collided with a Chevrolet Optra travelling in the opposite direction. The driver of the Honda Civic a 32 year old male received injuries to his legs. The driver of the Chevrolet Optra, a 32 year old female and three passengers aged 15,11 and 8 all received minor injuries.

Emergency services attended the accident and although all parties were taken to the Cayman Islands hospital in George Town no one involved in the accident its facing life threatening injuries despite both vehicles receiving extensive damage.

Any witnesses to the accident are asked to contact the Bodden Town Police Station on 949 2220

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Dr Devi Shetty gets go ahead from authorities

| 28/01/2013 | 3 Comments

P1010683.jpg(CNS Business): A proposed major hospital development in East End by Dr Devi Shetty has been given the nod to go ahead by local authorities after two Planned Area Development applications gained planning permission recently. The local partners in the project to develop a major health city that is hoped will kick start medical tourism in Cayman said the Central Planning Authority had approved the first ever PADs submitted to it last year. The approvals cover 100 acres of land and the fees for submitting the applications brought in around CI$400,000 for the government.The first PAD includes plans for a hospital, hotel, and medical and nursing schools on 50 acres of land. Read more and comment on CNS business

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Ministry claims scholarship management improved

| 28/01/2013 | 16 Comments

(CNS): Education ministry officials have said that a follow up review of the management of the scholarship programme by the government’s internal auditors found that the ministry had made significant progress. An audit conducted for the financial year July 2009 to June 2010 found weaknesses in the way the government scholarship programme was managed. But the review at the end of the 2010/2011 financial year had found then that the department was well on its way to addressing many of the weaknesses. Since then the education minister has claimed even more improvements to the system, which is based on merit.

Rolston Anglin, the education minister, said that when he took up office he found a number of problems with the management of the programme, in particular the vetting and monitoring of the students receiving government cash for school.

The scholarship programme is based on merit, the minister also stated recently, adding that government supports access to tertiary education for all those who qualify and meet the academic standards set and not on whether or not the student comes from a family with the economic means to pay for college.  

The maximum award is CI$20,000 per year for undergraduate studies overseas. Anglin said that over time scholarship recipients have come from all strata of society and have returned to make meaningful contributions in many different fields in our country. 

“The scholarship programme was set up and continues to operate as a critical investment in our young people and the future of our country, to achieve better educated citizens more equipped to deal with new challenges and technological advances and to ensure the Cayman Islands can compete on a level playing field with other countries,” the Minister said.

“I was especially concerned to find that there were significant weaknesses in the vetting of applications and the monitoring of performance,” Anglin said. “The fact that there was only one staff member managing the budget and process was also an issue. I shared these and other concerns with the country in public statements and then set to work to bring real change.”

By the time the Internal Auditors visited in July 2011, the team managing the scholarship programme had increased from one person to three. According to Chief Officer Mary Rodrigues, this was an essential first step. 

“We wanted to ensure we had the resources to better manage the millions of dollars being invested in our young people. We also wanted a unit that had the capacity to counsel and guide our students, and to monitor and hold recipients accountable for the investment being made in them,” she added.

Deirdre Seymour joined the Scholarship Secretariat as manager in January 2011.  She explained that with the support of Education Council, the ministry has continued to build on the progress made during the 2010/11 financial year.  The secretariat now offers an enhanced tracking system for the issuance of funds and expenditure per scholarship recipient. It has also introduced a new Online Scholarship Application programme to facilitate the receipt of applications for local and overseas scholarships together with supporting documentation.

Officials also said that the system relating to scholarship documentation relative to applications, bonding and academic performance requirements and maintenance of individual scholarships has been improved along with response times for the award of scholarships, disbursement of funds, queries and document submission for new and returning scholarship recipients.

The website and online applications along with email communication have all reduced the foot traffic into the Ministry of Education, which benefited the ministry.

There has also been a significantincrease in the number of warnings that have been issued and suspensions of funding for current local and overseas scholarship recipients not meeting academic requirements.

Officials said Improvements included enhanced student support and career guidance, including public and private school visits and presentations by the Scholarship Secretariat.

The ministry and the secretariat said they want to assure the public that they are committed to continually improving the Cayman Islands Government Scholarship Services. 

For more information on the Government Scholarship program please call 244-2482 or email  Persons can also visit the scholarship page on the Ministry’s website at:

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Prison says visits are part of rehab goals

| 28/01/2013 | 6 Comments

Visit Room Renovation 115 (277x300).jpg(CNS): In an effort to help inmates at HMP Northward either rebuild or build on existing healthy relationships with family and friends while serving their sentences prison, authorities have made improvements to the visitor experience. As part of the entire management of offenders and the rehabilitation process, the visitors' room has been renovated and redesigned to give prisoners more privacy with their loved ones when they visit at weekends. Some 300 visitors pass through the visiting room and prison officials said the enhancements were more conducive to promoting the healthy relationships that prisoners will need to start their crime free lives on release.

Late last month, Tom Hines of the Governor’s Office and the Deputy Chief Officer Corrections and Rehabilitation Kathryn Dinspel-Powell assisted prison officials in refurbishing and repainting the Visitors’ Hall at no cost to government.

The Acting Prison Deputy Director, Natalie Aduke Joseph-Caesar, explained the importance of relationships to the rehabilitation process. “The ‘end-to-end’ management of offenders being implemented is the new way of operating and is based on research that demonstrates re-offending can be reduced by helping offenders to deal with factors such as homelessness, drug addiction, maintaining family contact and unemployment, and other issues.”

She explained, in a release from government that HMCIPS is using a “seven pathways to reduce re-offending” in the provision of services to offenders.

“One pathway is to help them maintain strong relationships with families and children, which can play a major role in enabling prisoners to make and sustain changes that help them to avoid re-offending. This is often difficult because incarceration places added strains on family relationships,” Aduke Joseph-Caesar added.

New chairs and prison-made tables have replaced the long common table that limited opportunities for privacy and individual communication.

Acting Prison Director Daniel Greaves said inmates had been very receptive and appreciative of the recent improvements. “This new ambiance fosters a stronger family connection and creates a feeling of optimism – which in turn assists greatly with the inmates’ rehabilitation and re-entry into society. It places them in a better frame of mind for family life and communications.”

The revitalized room now includes a book corner where children can read with parents as well as more colourful surroundings – including artwork by inmates and prison officers.  A waiting room was established at the prison several years ago and there is a small garden, where visitors can view the latest crops of tomatoes and cabbage grown by the inmates.

While the new room creates a more pleasant fact-to-face experience for those visiting their loved ones who are in prison, officials said there are no provisions for conjugal visits at the prison institutions. However, special unsupervised home visits of a few hours are allowed periodically based on inmates’ ranking, privileges earned and other factors.

Meanwhile, the few female prisoners incarcerated at Fairbanks Prison in George Town are visited at that facility.

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LIME warns customers of e-mail con

| 28/01/2013 | 0 Comments

phishing-scammer (239x300).jpg(CNS): Local telecommunications company LIME is telling its customers to be on the lookout for a phishing scam following a number of reports from people who have received emails claiming to be from LIME regarding webmail storage quotas which is not genuine.  Julie Hutton, Marketing Manager LIME Cayman Islands explained that this was a con designed to extract secure information from its customers and warned them not to give out sensitive information to anyone. Offering advice on how to avoid being scammed LIME warned its customer to stay off spam lists and to not post e-mail addresses on public sites.

“Phishing is an attempt, usually via e-mail, to trick people into revealing sensitive information like usernames, passwords, and credit card data by pretending to be a bank or some other legitimate entity,” said Hutton.

“The e-mails typically include a link to a Web site that appears to be legitimate and which prompts users to provide information.  Many phishing attempts originate from overseas so they often have misspellings and grammatical errors. Some have an urgent tone and they seek sensitive information that legitimate companies don't typically ask for via e-mail.  I would like to remind everyone that LIME would never ask for a customer’s password and customers should never give out that type of information whether over the phone or via email and avoid clicking on links if you suspect the email is not genuine” she added.

The contents of the email received by LIME customers read:

Dear User,
You have almost exceeded your webmail storage quota. To avoid losing your files & Mail Sevice Suspension, please kindly click on the link below.
please click here to proceed
Failure to do this will lead to suspension/deactivation of your Email account.
Thank you for choosing our service provider.
Customer Support
Copyright 2013 LIME. Cable & Wireless Plc.

Offering some advice on how to avoid falling foul of phishing and other scams LIME said people should create an e-mail address that is less likely to get included in spam lists. Instead of, the firm said use something like .
If an e-mail looks reasonable contact the company directly if you receive an e-mail asking you to verify information. Type the address of the company into the address bar directly rather than click on a link. Or call them, but don't use any phone number provided in the e-mail. Don't give out personal information requested via e-mail. Legitimate companies and agencies will use regular mail for important communications and never ask customers to confirm log-in or passwords by clicking on links in e-mail.

Look carefully at the Web address a link directs to and type in addresses in the browser for businesses if you are uncertain. Don't open e-mail attachments that you did not expect to receive. Don't open download links in IM. And don't enter personal information in a pop-up window or e-mail. Make sure you are using a secure Web site when submitting financial and sensitive information. Change passwords frequently. Don't use the same password on multiple sites.

Regularly log into online accounts to monitor the activity and check statements. Use antivirus, antispam, and firewall software and keep your operating system and applications up-to-date.

Meanwhile the police also endorsed the advice given by LIME.

“No-one should ever open, or respond to a suspicious e-mail or provide passwords, account numbers or any other personal details. Criminals send out millions of these fraudulent e-mails to random e-mail addresses in the hope of luring persons to respond and provide their personal details” said Donavon Livingston Bailey, from the RCIPS.

If you receive a suspicious email, the best course of action is to delete it immediately and avoid following any suggested web links.   Anyone who wants to find out more about how to avoid online scams should contact the RCIPS Financial Crime Unit 949-8797.

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Rotarians bring in ‘rapper’ to motivate youngsters

| 28/01/2013 | 1 Comment

rashad jones (223x300).jpg(CNS):  With the goal of inspiring young people to be a success local Rotarians have organised and sponsored a visit to Cayman by freestyle rapper and motivational speaker Rashad Jones. The youth guru will be in Grand Cayman on 6,7,8 February when he will give three special presentations. Described as a ‘high impact’ youth expert, Jones is from the United States but addresses audiences around the world using his talent as a freestyle rapper to get the message across on subjects that matter to young people. Jones is said to connect with his young audiences and tells them what they need to hear.

Jones agreed to Rotary Central invitation to address young people here about the opportunities they have for a bright future and give them the ideas they need to succeed in their adult lives. "My goal is to ignite the fuse of positive change in the life of every youth I come into contact with," said Jones.

John Gray High School and the Cayman Islands Further Education Centre will be hosting events featuring Rashad Jones on February 6 and 7. Then on his last night in Cayman On February 8, Rotary Central will be hosting a dinner for all the stakeholders associated with programs related to our youth and for other interested parties where Jones will be the keynote speaker.

In sponsoring these important events, Rotary said it hopes to make a difference in the community and “ignite the fuse of positive change”.

Rotary Central’s Director Francine Bryce, who has spearheaded this initiative said; “Our Rotary club feels good about supporting our youth today, but more importantly, we believe it is our duty to ensure we do everything we can to encourage them to be successful”.
For more information about Rashad Jones’ visit, please contact Francine at 925-2931.

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Cops warn fake CI$25 look like real thing

| 28/01/2013 | 5 Comments

toilet-paper-money (300x273).jpg(CNS): The police are warning the public to remain on the lookout for counterfeit Cayman cash as officers from the RCIPS Financial Crime Unit say forged KYD25 are still in circulation throughout the island. The notes which are forgeries of the new Cayman Islands Monetary Authority 2010 series all carry the serial number D/1218076 on the front. These notes look exactly like the real thing but do not have the usual security features that real notes do and as a result people need to check their cash closely. Business owners in particular are being urged to ensure that their staff members are familiar with the look and feel of genuine notes, as well as the security features to look out for such as paper quality, watermarks and the metallic strips.

If retail staff receive a fake note, or one they suspect to be counterfeit, they should note the description of the person passing the note, as well as any companion. The note should not be returned to the person who handed over the forged cash.

The person receiving the note should initial it and date it close to the edge, then tag the note with a copy of the transaction receipt and call the police. 
Anyone who is found to be involved in the production or circulation of counterfeit cash could face up to ten years behind bars. In addition, anyone who receives a note which they believe to be fake must contact the police immediately as it is a criminal offence to retain or pass on the note.

“If you are in possession of a note that’s found to be counterfeit you will not be compensated, so those few extra seconds spent checking the cash could prevent you from losing out financially,” Detective Inspector Livingstone Bailey of the Financial Crime Unit warned.

The advice from the Financial Crime Unit is to ay attention to the feel of the paper on which notes are printed. Genuine notes are printed on special paper that has a rough texture. Counterfeit notes have a smooth texture and will smudge or smear when exposed to water.

“Hold notes up to the light to identify the following features:- turtle watermark, electrotype wording CIMA, holographic stripe for upper three denominations 25, 50 and 100 KYD notes, the window security thread for three lower denominations  1, 5 and 10 KYD notes or the embedded thread for the upper three denominations,” the FCU officers advised.

Despite that the counterfeit notes currently in circulation are fake $25 bills, the police warned the public to pay attention to notes of all denominations including one-dollar bills upwards and if you receive a note that you are not sure of, compare it to one that you know is genuine.

The police are also asking businesses that have counterfeit report forms to obtain as much information as possible from the person passing the note and write it on the form and to secure any CCTV footage of the transaction and the passer.

The RCIPS form for reporting counterfeit money can be found on the CIMA website  under “Currency.”

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Drug council begins fact based campaign

| 28/01/2013 | 11 Comments

drug facts.JPG(CNS): Having teamed upwith the US based National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) Cayman’s own National Drug Council (NDC) has launched its inaugural Drug Facts Week as part of the internationally observed campaign Shatter The Myths which aims to equip teens with evidence-based information about drugs and drug abuse. The NDC is pressing home the message throughout February with various initiatives such as a poster competition, parent workshops and Interpersonal Drug Education (IDE) presentations with a specific focus on myths for high school students. Joan West-Dacres, Executive Director of the NDC said the fact based campaign tied in with the approach that NDC takes in its efforts to address the problems of drug and alcohol abuse in Cayman.

“This partnership is significant to the NDC as our research and prevention efforts are rooted in providing factual information. Moreover, it offers an opportunity to take part in the exchange of ideas and information which will be shared with our stakeholders,” said West-Dacres.

Simon Miller, Prevention Officer of the NDC added, “We must begin by listening to our young people and dispel myths by providing them an opportunity to ask questions about drugs. Otherwise, substance abuse will remain prevalent in youth culture.”

The internationally observed week which features community-based events, activities online, television ads, and various contests can be accessed through the NDC’s website at
For more information and ways to participate contact the National Drug Council at 949-
9000 Email: or visit


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$20k offered for robbery info

| 26/01/2013 | 26 Comments

BRA1739102BA77.jpg(CNS): Kirk Freeport and Cayman Crime Stoppers have joined forces to offer a $20,000 for information leading to the arrest and subsequent conviction of the people who committed a robbery at the duty free store earlier this month. The evening heist took place around 6:40pm on 7 January at the store in The Strand, when four masked men, one of whom was in possession of a handgun, entered the store, threatened staff and made off with a quantity of expensive watches. Four men were arrested by police; one 28-year-old was charged and remanded in custody to HMP Northward awaiting trial, while the other three men were released on police bail while enquiries continue.

RX166613________97203___BDN (210x300).jpgOn the night of robbery the men made off with the Rolex and Breitling watches (examples of which are posted), then fled from the scene on foot to the rear of Kirk Freeport and towards the construction site on the West Bay Road opposite the Caribbean Club.

The robbers were described as:
Male 1: tall (approx. 6ft – 6ft 3”), slim build and wearing a woolen black ski type mask – no holes cut out for the mouth. He was wearing a heavy black ‘bomber’ style jacket and black pants (possibly jeans). He wore dark coloured gloves.
Male 2: tall (approx. 6ft – 6ft 3”), slim / medium build and wearing a black mask, a black jacket, black pants and black shoes. He was wearing dark coloured gloves.
Male 3: tall (approx. 6ft – 6ft 3”), slim build and wearing a black mask, a black jacket, black pants and black basketball style shoes which have white soles and white toes. He was wearing light coloured gardening style gloves.
Male 4: medium height (approx. 5ft 7” – 5ft 9”), medium build and wearing a black mask, a black jacket, blue jeans and black shoes. He was wearing light coloured gardening style gloves.

Detective Inspector Kathy Marshall said she hoped the reward — $10,000 from Kirk Freeport plus $10,000 from Cayman Crime Stoppers — would encourage anyone whohas information about the crime to come forward.

“We have spoken to a number of people who were in the area at the time of the crime,” said DI Marshall. “However, if you were in the area and have not yet come forward we would urge you to do so as soon as possible. You can pass information to us in confidence and you may eligible for the reward.”

Gerry Kirkconnell, Managing Director of Kirk Freeport, said the company felt it was important to do all that it could to help the police investigation.

“This was a terrifying experience for our staff. Thankfully no one was injured and the police were able to make some quick arrests. The Cayman Islands is relatively crime free and we know that the events of 7 January have concerned many people within the business community. We hope that the offer of this substantial reward will encourage those who have information to come forward. It’s important for us all that these people are brought to justice as quickly as possible to ensure that the Cayman Islands remains a world leading financial and tourist centre.”

Malcolm Ellis, Chairman of Cayman Crime Stoppers, said, “Cayman Crime Stoppers remains committed to providing ways for people to submit tips without revealing their identity and to facilitate rewards for information.  We support this effort by adding another $10,000 to the $10,000 put up by Kirk Freeport, bringing the reward total to $20,000 for information that leads to an arrest and conviction in this case.  Anyone with information about this crime can call 800-TIPS or visit our website at to submit a tip anonymously.  We want your information, not your name.”

Anyone with information is asked to call the Drugs and Serious Crime Task Force at 949-4222 or, if you wish to remain anonymous, contact either the RCIPS tip-line on 949-7777 or Crime Stoppers on 800-8477(TIPS).

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