Archive for August 21st, 2012

COLA cut best of limited choice, says Association

COLA cut best of limited choice, says Association

| 21/08/2012 | 55 Comments

rock-and-hard-place.jpg(CNS): The Cayman Islands Civil Service Association says that of all the options presented to its membership to help with budget savings, the 3.2% cost of living allowance (COLA) cut was the best choice. Recognizing the financial challenges facing the nation, CICSA President James Watler said he hoped that the country would remember the sacrifices made by public servants as he pointed out how difficult this cut would be for low earners who are already suffering from overtime cuts. “At the individual level many civil servants and their families face deep challenges and that most live from pay-cheque to pay-cheque,” President James Watler said Tuesday in the wake of the pay cut.

“Civil servants have endured in the face of cutbacks in overtime, pay freezes, reductions in other benefits, longer working hours and increased expectations to deliver more with less than is required to do the job,” the association boss wrote in a message to the wider membership.

He said CICSA accepted the rollback of the 3.2% COLA with a heavy heart as it was deemed the most equitable and productive option for trimming direct civil service expenditure for this financial year.

“CICSA has always expressed concern for the plight of our lowest wage earners who are often disproportionally impacted by expenditure cutting measures. It is with this in mind that we view the rollback of COLA as being potentially less painful for this particularly vulnerable group of civil servants to bear than other, flat-fee, options that were suggested,” Watler said, adding that the association had advocated that the savings from the 3.2% COLA cut would be earmarked for the public service pension liability.

“We know that this is a major national debt being borne by all of us as citizens,” the president acknowledged. “We take consolation in knowing that our sacrifice will go towards ensuring hard working civil servants can receive a pension and that we are directly contributing towards relief of a major source of national debt.”

Throughout the debate on the current budget crisis the CS had endured calls for salary and benefit cuts and some pundits had suggested cutting the head count by as much as 1,000 workers, Watler noted.

“We have heard weak justifications for these cuts based on the usual arguments that civil servants contribute nothing to their pensions and that health care is free. For too long the facts have been ignored that we do pay our portion of pensions and pay out of pocket for eye care, dental and other medical exclusions as in any insurance policy,” he stated.

Watler said the association was concerned about the initial proposals regarding pension contributions, and while these may have initially focused on contracted workers, they could easily have migrated to all civil servants. 

“After conducting extensive research we were able to present a robust case for a reassessment of this proposal. We anticipate an important announcement on pensions will be coming in the near future, which we hope will set the record straight and improve the national understanding of civil servants’ contributions to their pension,” the president added.

The association had also been urged by the membership to resist attempts to change health insurance coverage for civil servants without the choice of health care provider being placed on the table.

“Despite the lack of rationality in the public debate on this issue, even our strongest detractors must agree that our position is based on one of fundamental fairness," Watler said, and pledged that while the discussions are certain to continue, the association would strongly advocate on behalf of the members that choice must be introduced if they are to pay for health insurance.

With the pension and healthcare benefits preserved across the service, Watler noted that it was inevitable that payroll would be the alternative target.

“We trust that our sacrifices will be remembered, not only when it’s convenient but also in these times when everyone is joining hands and hearts together to rebuild this economy, to re-shape our public finances and to restore confidence in our nation. We trust that our efforts to date have demonstrated our value as a partner in this national process and we hope that we will continue to be afforded opportunities to have our voice heard and to contribute to the dialogue,” he said, adding that the civil service has delivered in times of great challenge and crisis before and would do so again.

See full message below from CICSA President.

Continue Reading

NT to promote conservation with new awards

NT to promote conservation with new awards

| 21/08/2012 | 5 Comments

(i) Catboat Easter Regatta (248x300).jpg(CNS): This October the Cayman Islands National Trust will be presenting its inaugural Governor’s Conservation Awards at its 25th Anniversary Gala on Friday, 2 November, at the Grand Old House. The Trust is calling on the community to submit nominations for the new awards, which aim to recognise individuals, businesses and organisations that have contributed to historic preservation or environmental conservation in the Cayman Islands. Awards will be made are in four categories: Conservationist of the Year, Excellence in Corporate Conservation, Tourism Industry Conservation, and Heritage Preservation.

The Conservationist of the Year is designed to celebrate an individual who has implemented or significantly contributed to a conservation project aimed at protecting biodiversity, wildlife, endangered species, and places of environmental or historic significance, contributed to the long-term success of local conservation efforts and promoted conservation education and awareness locally.

The Corporate Conservation Award is for firms that have made a real change that goes beyond ‘business as usual’ in an organization requires real leadership, foresight and collaboration. Nominees should demonstrate that they have implemented significant changes within the organization to reduce its environmental/carbon footprint aligned its internal processes with internationally accepted corporate “green” best practices; and promoted a more environmentally conscious work ethic amongst customers and staff alike.

The ideal candidate for the Tourism Conservation Award must be a leader in offering environmentally-friendly visitor services. Also, it must be a place where visitors have easy access to nature, beauty and outdoor recreation opportunities. Nominees should demonstrate that they offer services which promote and highlight the natural resources and heritage of Cayman, as well as having incorporated sustainable measures such as efficient use of resources, reduction of waste generation, minimization of environmental impacts, policies for monitoring operations and planning for improvement, as well as educating visitors and locals about local natural resources and heritage.

When it comes to the Heritage Preservation Award the trust is looking for nominees who have demonstrated a consistent commitment for 10 years or more to the preservation of built, written or cultural elements of Cayman’s history, through a specific project or on-going activities. Nominees should demonstrate their contribution to preserving a historic or cultural legacy for future generations, their contribution to a harmonious blend of the best of the past, present and future recognizing “heritage” as a living tradition and a commitment to educating people of all ages as to the importance of preserving the local history and culture.

Nominations may be made without the knowledge of the nominee but nominations for posthumous awards will not be accepted, the trust stated. Projects or activities of nominees must have commenced within the past ten years and nominees may be nominated for more than one category provided they fall within the criteria outlined.

People wishing to nominated individuals for any of the four awards can download the form below of from and e-mail the completed form to Tom Hines at

Deadline for entries is Saturday, 22 September and the shortlist announcement will be made on Friday, 28 September. The awards will then be presented at the 25th Anniversary Gala on Friday, 2 November, at the Grand Old House.

For more details on the awards and the latest news from the National Trust see the nomination form below and the newsletter here.

Continue Reading

TS9 becomes Tropical Storm Isaac

TS9 becomes Tropical Storm Isaac

| 21/08/2012 | 3 Comments

isaac1.JPG(CNS): At around 4pm local time the ninth tropical depression of this year’s hurricane season emerged as Tropical Storm Isaac. The National hurricane Centre in Miami said that the storm was about 500 miles east of Guadeloupe travelling towards the west at around 17mph. With winds of more than 40mmph forecasters said further strengthening was expected over the next couple of days. Although the storm currently presents no danger to the Cayman Islands, on its current track Isaac is expected to pass across Cuba on Sunday afternoon.

The storm should move through the central Lesser Antilles Wednesday evening and emerge over the Eastern Caribbean Sea by Thursday morning. Tropical storm force winds currently extend outward up to 45 miles to the northeast of the centre.

Meanwhile, another weather system was brewing out in the Atlantic which the NHC was giving a high chance of becoming a tropical cyclone. The area of low pressure was located about 550 miles southwest of the Cape Verde Islands. Although forecasters said that the shower activity is currently not well organizedenvironmental conditions appear conducive for development and a tropical depression could formduring the next day or two.  This system has a 60 per cent of becoming a tropical cyclone during the next 48 hours as it moves westward at about 15 mph.


Go to NHC for more details

Continue Reading

YouTube video expresses disappointment with UDP

YouTube video expresses disappointment with UDP

| 21/08/2012 | 15 Comments

mac_2.JPG(CNS): The Cayman Islands premier is the subject of another video posted on YouTube that expresses the disappointment of many Caymanians with the UDP administration. Lacking the humour of the popular “What I see happening” video, in which Bush’s speeches were cleverly merged into a catchy tune about bureaucratic harassment, the latest videolists a number of issues that have fuelled the mounting opposition to the current administration throughout the community. The producers, who are using the label 'CayPolitics', remain anonymous and the video, entitled “UDP devastation in the Cayman Islands”, is set to Sam Cooke’s haunting song “A change is gonna come”.

See new 'UDP devastation’ video here

See ‘What I see happening’ video here


Continue Reading

One solution to two problems

One solution to two problems

| 21/08/2012 | 35 Comments

We are at this time in our history faced with multiple economic problems but they are all solvable. Aside from the financial tribulations being experienced by our government, the majority of us in this country are faced with what I will describe as a ‘pension dilemma’. Most of us are aware of the current financial problems faced by government, so there is no need to elaborate on this issue at this point in my article.

By the term ‘pension dilemma’ I mean that our pension system is flawed in several ways.

Firstly we are forced by law to pay pensions but there is no guarantee that upon retirement we will have more than we paid in to our pensions, or even the full amount that we paid.

The second flaw in our pension system is the fact that the pension providers are themselves faced with the issue of generating a return for their clients. This means investing in overseas financial markets and in some cases having to add a second layer of money managers, thereby increasing management fees. Additionally those financial markets are very unstable with the world going from one financial crisis to the other.

The third pension problem is that those of us who are at the lower income scale will not in our lifetime accumulate enough through our pension to ever sustain ourselves later in life and many of us will become dependent on government funded social services for assistance.

So how can we find an alternative that will solve our pension dilemma and at the same time have a positive impact on our economy and be beneficial to government’s financial position?

In relation to the government’s financial position this includes substantial debt and a significant amount of interest per year.

The obvious solution for government is to do a phased 5-year disposal of all of the public authorities, including the Water Authority, the sewerage system, the Port Authority, CINICO and Cayman Airways.

The major concern in their disposal is – to whom will we sell these essential components of our infrastructure?  Certainly I would not recommend that we allow any single company or person to have this kind of control over our country. Furthermore these utilities should not be controlled by any foreign entity.

So here is an alternative that might solve all of the problems that I have set out above:

We need the pensions law amended so that it stipulates that at least 80% of the assets now held by our pension funds must be returned to Cayman and invested in specified local investment vehicles and the transfer of funds should be scheduled over the next five years.

We need the specified investment vehicles to be secure and to bring a guaranteed return on investment to our pensions and a fixed amount of management fees to all of the pension providers.

We need the pension contribution for everyone to be set at a minimum amount of $300 per month. If the salary is less than $3,000 per month then the employee should continue to pay 5% of salary and the employer make up the difference to bring it to $300.

For those who have not already put one and two together, I am suggesting that government should sell our public owned companies to our own pension fund providers.

The best way to accomplish all of the above is for government to retain 20% interest in each of these entities and to have a proportional role in their management. We all know that the private sector generally provides more efficient management than government, so this enables the private sector, in this case the pension fund appointed management systems, to have control and this thereby will improve efficiency.

I believe that our current utility company, CUC, is guaranteed a return on investment of somewhere between 10% and 15%, so these entities that will be owned by our pension funds and thereby ourselves will need the same arrangement.

There are many future benefits that will flow from what I am proposing here.

For example in five years time when the government has divested 80% of all of these assets, government will have earned enough to pay off the total public debt and have a surplus.

The civil service will have a significant reduction in employees because those employees previously working for the government-owned authorities will by that time be privately employed in the then private enterprises. This will bring the civil service and thereby government expenditure down to a manageable size.

The pension funds will have a stable and sufficient return on investment and will be in a better position to keep their management fees to a minimum.

The cost to consumers should not increase because more efficient management brings with it lower operating costs. And even if we complain about high utility costs at least we would know that in the long run our pensions will be substantially more than we contributed because we are the ultimate beneficiaries of the profit from our utilities.

This brings me back to the reason why I recommended a minimum pension amount of $300. A compound interest calculator shows that if we invested $3,600 annually for 21 years, with annual interest of 9% we would have more than $200,000 accumulated in our pension.

I don’t have to add that this will significantly reduce social services expenditure on those of us whose pensions would otherwise be insufficient to cover our living expenses in our later years.

If our pension fund has a return of 9% to 12%, we would all be in a much better financial position when retirement time comes around.

Finally, the biggest windfall of all will come in five years time, if we chose to take these companies public by having them listed on the NASDAQ or other exchange.

This public offering through a US or other international exchange will bring in substantial new investment, which can then be applied to green energy such as solar energy, wind-driven energy, the purchase of CUC, the purchase of our fuel depots (or the creation of our own), or other similar investments.

We would however need to structure any public offering so that control is maintained locally.

Admittedly, it will be almost impossible to guarantee fixed earnings for Cayman Airways and the two public attractions, but that does not mean that they cannot be made profitable by privatization and by the increased efficiency that privatization will bring.

To those critics who will say that this is not a viable solution, I say to you that this is a basic idea that can be revised, improved and amended. Our current system of sending our hard earned dollars to be lost in the US stock market is, in my opinion, much more risky than the solutions which I have outlined here.

The sale of our public authorities to any entity other than our pension funds might help government finances in a similar way, but we will then be left with the same pension dilemma and the additional scenario where the profit from our utilities might not be re-invested in Cayman.

My conclusion therefore is that a phased transfer of the assets of our pension funds back to Cayman to purchase our own infrastructure combined with a coordinated infrastructure disposal by government will go a long way to solving two of our major problems between now and the next five years.

Continue Reading

Civil servants lose COLA for second time

Civil servants lose COLA for second time

| 21/08/2012 | 20 Comments

pay-packet-peanuts.jpg(CNS): Public sector workers are set to take a 3.2% pay cut next month for the second time during the last three years. Government is once again rolling back the cost of living allowance (COLA), which was returned last September, in order to achieve a surplus budget at a time when government spending has reached a record $650million. Although the premier has stated on numerous occasions that he will not cut the public sector head count he said during his budget speech Monday evening that civil servants had agreed to give up the COLA. According to a memo circulated by the deputy governor yesterday the pay cut will begin on 1 September.

Although existing health and pension benefits of existing public servants will now no longer be affected, including the housing allowance for police officers, all civil servants included the lowest paid will lose the 3.2%.

The deputy governor said he cut was regrettable but the measure and other minor changes for new civil servants would prove the least disruptive.

Franz Manderson said his aim was to protect the jobs of existing civil servants but that new posts would not be filled which would require public servants to take on extra work. Some 140 vacancies will be eliminated over the next year and the moratorium on recruitment will lead to a further cut in the size of the local public sector over the next five years.

The deputy governor also announced plans for a voluntary redundancy scheme in the service and said he would discuss this with the Civil Service Association.

“The civil service has many critics and I welcome constructive criticism as it helps us to examine what we do and how we can improve,” Manderson wrote in the memo which was sent to all public sector workers. “I am confident that a strong, stable and efficient civil service will continue to contribute positively to the economic and social well-being and development of the Cayman Islands.”

He praised the local service for their work in recent weeks with the “unprecedented circumstances” and “Considerable uncertainty” during the budget crisis.

However, Manderson warned that the reduced resources would affect the timeliness of services and a public education campaign would be required to educate the public.

See full memo here

Continue Reading

Year ends on $10m deficit

Year ends on $10m deficit

| 21/08/2012 | 46 Comments

busted-piggy-bank3 (221x300).jpg(CNS): The premier said the public finance year-end result for 2011/12 is a “remarkable testament to the government’s stewardship”, even though the year ended with a$10 million deficit, when the forecast figure had been for a small surplus. During a long and disjointed presentation on this financial year’s budget on Monday evening, McKeeva Bush claimed credit for reducing government’s operating deficit from $80 million when he took office in 2009 to $10m. The premier overlooked the three-year plan that was submitted to the UK in 2010, however, that had called for a more than $10 million surplus by the end of this financial year.

Bush stated in his budget address, which lasted more than three hours, that his government had brought the deficit down as a result of sound financial management. He said the core government deficit was only $2 million and the deficit for statutory authorities and government companies was just over $8 million, which produced an overall shortfall for government’s 2012/13 spending plans of just over $10 million.

Although this accounted for more than $13 million amiss in the forecast from last year, Bush claimed the deficit as an achievement — one that had been arrived at without cutting the civil service by 20%, which he said the UK had called for. Bush maintained that he was standing firm on civil service jobs and he would not cut the headcount in the forthcoming budget either.

However, he did reveal that the civil service was taking another pay cut as the cost of living allowance (COLA) of 3.2%, first rolled back at the beginning of the UDP term but returned to them last September, was being cut once again.

During the 2011/12 financial year government spending grew yet again, this time to an all time high of $546 million. Despite increases in public spending from less than $500 million in 2009, the premier insisted that, as a result of fiscal prudence, operating expenses had remained virtually unchanged since his government came to office, and all during the world’s worst ever economic recession.

A number of significant factors impacted spending this year which served to fuel the government’s $10 million plus deficit, even though it collected more revenue this year than any other government in the history of the Cayman Islands.

Bush said tertiary care costs were $5.3m more than expected, rising to $18.6m. Rental payments for people in need was $700,000 more than budgeted and transfer payments for scholarships and poor relief, among other things, also grew from the $28.8m forecasted to a whopping $34 million.

“These are increases in spending that can’t be avoided and represent the challenges we face,” he said, adding that the payments were “compulsory for a caring government” but he acknowledged that government had to implement policies to address these spending problems.

The premier said that his government would continue to play its part in the country’s recovery through fiscal discipline and that there would be no new long term borrowing. Bush emphasised on a number of occasions throughout his budget address how prudent his government had been towards debt.

However, he ignored the fact that he had originally asked for approval from the UK to increase the country’s long term borrowing by almost $60 million for a number of projects his government wished to pursue, which was declined.

Bush said that government’s debt was growing as a result of the last administration’s policies, which his government was left to deal with, as he railed once again about the new government schools and the Government Administration Building. He also said the constitutional changes, such as the bill of rights, were straining government’s resources.

He announced that government would be further restructuring its borrowing because he had been advised that the time was right and government should be able to reduce the cost of its debt payments, which are around $60 million a year in total, on accumulative debt, which currently stands at around $590 million.

See original three year budget plan here.

Continue Reading

Experts find mangroves can slow surge

Experts find mangroves can slow surge

| 21/08/2012 | 22 Comments

front.jpg(CNS): Evidence from the latest scientific research suggests that mangroves can reduce the height of wind and swell waves over relatively short distance. According to a report by the Nature Conservancy and Wetlands International wave height can be reduced by as much as 66% over 100 metres of mangroves. With coastal populations particularly vulnerable to the impacts of extreme events such as storms and hurricanes researchers say mangrove forests can be used as a tool in coastal defence strategies making their conservation a key part of protection. Researchers say that more work needs to be done to better understand the role they can play in defending coasts.

While Cayman does provide for some protection of mangrove buffers under the planning regulations, the plant is still persistently removed in the face of development. This was evidence in 2010 when more than 370,000 sq.ft of costal mangrove was ripped up by the developer of the Ritz Carlton on land earmarked for the Dragon Bay development.
Michael Ryan was granted permission to rip out the mangrove more than two years ago but no development has taken place on the site. In addition the promised replenishment programme has also failed to materialize.

In this new report by the environmental researchers, the importance of dense healthy mangrove to protecting coastal areas from storms has been highlighted as the experts say the plant reduces the wave energy.

“While mangrove forests are usually found on shores with little incoming wave energy, they may receive larger waves during storms, hurricanes and periods of high winds. Large wind and swell waves can cause flooding and damage to coastal infrastructure. By reducing wave energy and height, mangroves can potentially reduce associated damage,” the authors of the new report state. 

“All evidence suggests that mangroves can reduce the height of wind and swell waves over relatively short distances: wave height can be reduced by between 13 and 66% over 100 m of mangroves. The highest rate of wave height reduction per unit distance occurs near the mangrove edge, as waves begin their passage through the mangroves," the report finds.

It explains that waves are most rapidly reduced when they pass through a greater density of obstacles.

“Mangroves with aerial roots will attenuate waves in shallow water more rapidly than those without,” the researchers say. “At greater water depths, waves may pass above aerial roots, but the lower branches can perform a similar function.  The slope of the shore and the height of the waves also affect wave reduction rates through mangroves.”

With confirmation that mangroves can attenuate wind and swell waves, the report states that research has focused on small but there is a need to measure the attenuation of larger wind and swell waves associated with greater water depths, which may occur during hurricanes.

“While more research is needed, existing knowledge is sufficient to substantiate the claim that mangroves attenuate wind and swell waves,” the report concludes. “Appropriate management of mangrove areas could increase wave attenuation. This might include the protection of mangrove areas in key settings, or lead to the restoration or planting of mangroves in degraded and deforested settings, where local conditions have been shown to support the establishment of mangrove seedlings.”

The authors go on to say that dense mangrove forest, including species with aerial roots will offer the highest level of protection from wind and swell waves.

See report here

Continue Reading

Details and rules released for CIFEC new school year

Details and rules released for CIFEC new school year

| 21/08/2012 | 0 Comments

(GIS): The school year is just about to begin and students need to make the necessary preparations to be ready for the upcoming academic year.  Cayman Islands Further Education Centre (CIFEC) students need to be aware of the important dates and activities happening over the next few weeks. CIFEC students who completed the academic year 2011/2012 must collect their examination results on Monday 27 August. On this day, students will also be able to access advice and guidance on their next steps from a range of providers, including CIFEC, UCCI, Cayman Islands Government’s Scholarships Secretariat and the Private Schools who offer A Level studies. 

Students must report to the Hall on the new CIFEC campus which is now located at 515 Walkers Road (old John Gray High School site) between 8:00am and 4:00pm. For the students who completed Year 11 in the 2011/2012 academic year, and are now entering CIFEC, there will be a three-step process to their enrolment.

During Step 1, students will come to collect their results and will be able to access advice and guidance about their progression pathways on Tuesday 28 August at CIFEC.    At this point, students who are interested in pursuing the CIFEC Dual-Entry Programme, which allows eligible students to spend Year 12 pursuing advanced study at an external programme for credit towards graduation, will be given an opportunity to apply for permission for entry.  In order to qualify for the Dual-Entry programme, students must have earned at least 5 Level 2 passes, including English and Mathematics.

Step 2 is for students who choose to study at CIFEC who will have an opportunity to enrol on this day.  They will meet with specialist Careers Advisors and curriculum staff to discuss their options and to put together a programme that best suits them. 

Step 3 is for all enrolled CIFEC students who will then undertake an intensive Induction Programme on Monday 3 September and Tuesday 4 September, which will introduce them to the year, their rights, responsibilities and activities.  The rest of that week will be spent working with Careers Staff to identify the best fit for individual internships.

Furthermore, it is important for CIFEC students to know what will be the acceptable dress code for this upcoming school year.  Due to the uniqueness of CIFEC, the uniform is slightly different from that of the other Government high schools.

The dress code for CIFEC is as follows:
All Clothing should be ironed
Torn, dirty, or frayed clothing is unacceptable
Uniform for Female Students:
Plain black shoes/sneakers – minimal heel permitted
White,  grey or black crew socks
Black skirt or pants that fit properly and are worn at the waist. Skirt no shorter than knee length
A solid White/Grey/Black blouse/polo shirt with no logo, decoration or pattern
Underclothing beneath blouses must be white in colour
One pair of stud earrings, should be in good taste, worn in the lower lobe
Makeup, nail polish and false nails suitable for working environment only
Head Covers that are required for religious purposes are allowed.
Hair is to be kept groomed and smart and appropriate for the workplace
Uniform for Male Students
Plain black shoes/sneakers
White,  grey or black crew socks
Black pants with pockets that fit properly and are worn at the waist
Solid black belt – no visible underwear
A solid White/Grey/Black collared long/short sleeve /polo shirt with no logo, decoration or pattern. T-shirts if worn underneath must be plain white.
Hair is to be groomed and smart.  No extreme hairstyle, design in the hair or colour
Earrings and other types of jewellery should not be worn.
No items that display connection to gangs are allowed.
Eyebrows are not to be shaved or have designs
Head Covers that are required for religious purposes are allowed.

Continue Reading

Bill of Rights to cost millions, says Manderson

Bill of Rights to cost millions, says Manderson

| 21/08/2012 | 9 Comments

manderson la.JPG(CNS): The deputy governor talked a good deal about the impact of the Bill of Rights on government in the Throne Speech delivered ahead of the budget presentation Tuesday, especially the cost. Presenting an overview of the government’s policies and plans for the coming financial year, Franz Manderson referred to the considerable amount of work going on in all of the portfolios and ministries in order to ready the administration for the bill, which takes effect in November. Manderson explained that much of the cost of implementing the Bill of Rights and ensuring government complies with it would be incurred in this financial year.

“Fulfilling its requirements, in the present economic climate, may call for a certain amount of creativity and innovation, as well as commitment to sustainability and good governance,” Manderson said in the official presentation. “Yet I am confident that these things are within the grasp of the Cayman Islands public service, although not without cost. Full implementation in the public sector is estimated to cost millions of dollars, much of which is in the present budget.”

The Bill of Rights forms part of the Cayman Islands 2009 Constitution and marks a sea-change in the relationship between the government and the people. For the first time Caymanians will have the right to access local legal redress when it comes to prejudice, discrimination or abuse against them by government entities.

The area of government that will be most affected by the BoR is the judicial services and legal department. Manderson said new procedures needed to be developed to ensure that the local courts could deal with applications alleging breach of the provisions in the bill. 

“While the Judiciary will draw on experience elsewhere in the region, in Europe and in North America, its preparations will strive to ensure that its approach properly reflects the Cayman Islands culture and history,” he added.

The deputy governor pointed out that it would be his office in conjunction with the Portfolio of Legal Affairs that would continue to prepare government for the November implementation of the bill and specialist training for those public officials who have powers of arrest has now started. 

The prison is another place where compliance with the bill will be important and feedback from the recent visit by the UK Prisons Inspectorate will help enhanced compliance for the treatment of incarcerated offenders in accordance with the BoR, he stated.

See full throne speech below.

Continue Reading