Archive for May 30th, 2013

Regional educator to talk about living with HIV

| 30/05/2013 | 0 Comments

(CNS): Dedicated advocate for HIV education John Lake who has been living with HIV for over 16 years is currently visiting the Cayman Islands to talk about the challenges he has faced by being openly HIV positive while living on a small island. A guestof the  Cayman AIDS Foundation (CAF) Lake is the CEO and founder of the Anguilla Community Action Network and he regularly reaches out to local communities to promote the truth that persons with HIV can and do live productive lives. Since 2011, the number of new HIV infections has doubled in Cayman with males accounting for 80% of new HIV infections and the majority are under the age of 40.

After sub-Saharan Africa, the Caribbean is one of the most heavily affected regions with HIV infections.  Even though HIV and AIDS have been around for many years, it is evident that many people still do not know enough about the disease and others struggle with the stigma of living with it. Education plays a key role in reducing the number of new HIV infections and breaking the barrier of stigma and discrimination.

Lake will is in Cayman until 2 June and will be hosting an open session at the HSA’s conference room today Thursday 30 May titled “Overcoming HIV” where he will talk about his experiences.

Lake serves as the focal point for HIV and AIDS for his church and the Optimist Club of Anguilla.  He is also a member of several international and Caribbean non-profit HIV organisations including the HIV multi-Sectorial Committee, CRN+, the Kenya AIDS Support Group and advisor to the St. Lucia AIDS Support Group.  It is our hope that the Cayman Islands will join forces with other Caribbean countries and implement policies that will protect persons living with HIV and AIDS.

CAF is a non-profit organisation established to improve the quality of life for people infected and affected by HIV and AIDS.  CAF continues to work within the Cayman Islands community to educate people about HIV and AIDS, safe practices, promoting regular HIV testing, preventing discrimination against people who are infected, and providing support for persons living with HIV and AIDS. For more information on CAF or on our World AIDS Day initiatives, please email


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Fire chief hangs up his cap

| 30/05/2013 | 0 Comments

Dennom Bodden (229x300).jpg(CNS): After more than 40 years in the Cayman Islands Fire Service, Chief Fire Officer Dennom Bodden has retired. Bodden, who moved up through the ranks to become the fire service boss in January 2008, ended his career last month. “I’ve enjoyed my time as a civil servant and my years of commitment to the Cayman Islands Fire Service, but now the time has come to move on,” he said. Acting Chief Fire Officer Rosworth McLaughlin, who was mentored by Bodden, is now holding the top job, while after 34 plus years of service, Craig McCoy has been promoted to Deputy Chief Fire Officer, Aerodrome.

Paying tribute to the former fire chief’s hard work and dedication, Chief Officer in the Ministry of Tourism & Development Stran Bodden said he had many distinguished years of service that could be emulated by officers throughout the ranks of the Fire Service. 

“The ministry has confidence in the Fire Service, and will continue to provide support to its senior team especially during this transition period,” he said. “The Cayman Islands Fire Service is an essential agency for our country. It is charged with fire prevention, as well as domestic and aerodrome rescue and fire fighting. Its objective is to ensure the safety of all residents and visitors to our shores.  I would like to personally thank all Fire Service personnel for their hard work and sacrifices over the years,” the CO added.

During his tenure Bodden encouraged his team to engage in professional development and growth. This led to the Fire Service becoming the first uniformed services department to encourage learning through the Civil Service College. Seven fire officers have already received a diploma in introduction to leadership as a result of this initiative. Meanwhile, a further ten are actively pursuing associates degrees.

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Alden sets out new path

| 30/05/2013 | 81 Comments

alden speach dennie.jpg(CNS): The premier of the Cayman Islands, in his first address as the country’s leader, said the Cayman Islands was on a new path with an inclusive government. Alden McLaughlin said Wednesday that it was “abundantly clear” that although the Westminster system of government is adversarial in nature, the challenges facing the nation would not be solved by “opposing for opposing’s sake”, as he asked all elected members to use their experience to move the country forward.  “I am not asking for a free pass, and my government will always welcome constructive criticism, but I believe that the experience that resides in this Chamber must be utilized for the benefit of the country at large,” he said. (Photo by Dennie Warren Jr)

Arriving in office at a critical point for the future of the offshore sector, McLaughlin said the re-ordering of the world’s finances was far from complete.

“A new world economic order is gradually emerging from the ashes of the 2009 global meltdown and if we are to continue to have a stake in the global financial industry, we must be prepared for further upheaval and indeed threats to the model on which our prosperity has been built. The signs are already there. It will not be business as usual,” he warned.

He said his government would do its part to protect the financial services industry from the onslaught, as he asked stakeholders to join government in the goal to keep the financial services industry on the cutting edge.

The premier also asked stakeholders in tourism to employ Caymanians and ensure they play an integral role in the industry. “A happy, safe and stable social environment is a prerequisite to a successful tourism industry,” he said, adding that it was in the interest of investors to ensure that Caymanians feel included in the sector which showcases their country and culture.

McLaughlin said in the long term a plan that was agreed to by the UK was needed to bring certainty to the budget process. Having already spoken to the Overseas Territories Minister, the premier said Mark Simmonds had indicated a willingness to work with the government to get the economy back on track.

“Within the next two weeks I will take a delegation including the Minister of Finance to the UK to meet with the British Government to resolve some of our budgetary issues for the upcoming fiscal year,” he added.

Pointing to the port and the airport expansion as key projects, he said getting them properly tendered and on stream would be an early priority for the new government. However, creating jobs was priority number one.

With a heavy workload ahead, the premier said the elections were over and the people had spoken.

“The country expects us to get on with the people’s business,” McLaughlin said. “It is time that we all put aside the differences that characterized the election campaign and come together as one people for the betterment of our beloved Cayman Islands. This is our country. Let us show the world that we are capable of working together for the greater good,” he added.

See full statement below.

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