SAGs & cops fuel CS increase

| 24/07/2013

(CNS): Despite government’s ongoingbattle to reduce the number of people it employs in an effort to cut costs, the latest statistics reveal that a whopping 5,901 people were still employed in the public sector at the fiscal year end for 2011/2012. The newly released statistics, which are already a year old, reveal that 91 people were added to the core government payroll and those of statutory authorities and government companies (SAGs) during the 2011/12 financial year. Officials said 22% of the increase in workers was mostly down to the jump in police numbers as a result of a spike in crime, while the other 78% increase in workers was across the various SAGs.

Despite the rise in numbers for 2011/12, over the last five years the size of the service has dropped by about 200 people because of the recruitment moratorium which started in October 2008. This requires that all requests to fill vacancies, add posts or renew fixed term contracts be approved by the deputy governor. 

“The report shows that while we experienced minimum staff growth in 2011/12, over the past 5 years we have continued to make steady progress to decrease the size of the service through natural attrition while still facilitating policy priorities of the government, such as public safety, education and good governance, as illustrated in initiatives such as the Freedom of Information and the adoption of the Bill of Rights,” Franz Manderson, the deputy governor, stated Wednesday in a release accompanying the report. “The results are gradual but tangible.” 

He added that any effort to accelerate the pace of reducing the public service would require policy decisions to streamline the services government provides and to tackle HR and other costs associated with government companies. Manderson warned that core government had already reached the end of its ability to cut without major changes. Given the current situation with government finances, this is bad news for the new administration, which will need to show a reduction in operating expenses in its budget expected in less than two months.

“In core government, we have virtually exhausted efforts to do more with less and the questions which currently loom are what services, if any, is the community and government willing to discontinue,” Manderson said. “We also need to work more closely with the various arm’s length bodies, that is SAGCs, as they join our efforts to reduce costs and improve efficiency,” he warned.

The report revealed that the majority of government workers are still local, with more than 74% of civil servants and employees in SAGs being Caymanians. Nevertheless, government is still a diverse employee, as there are people working in government from 37 different countries. Reflecting the make-up of the workforce in Cayman as a whole, the largest ex-pat group are Jamaicans, who account for 12% of the public sector workforce.

The service is evenly split between the genders, withwomen representing some 52% of the entire service, but on average female civil servants earn less than men. The top three salary grades are dominated by men, who hold 64% of the positions. However, with salary freezes and the cost of living allowance (COLA) cut among others, the wages of all civil servants have stagnated and the majority of people in the service earn less than $40,000 per year.

The lack of salary increases and the removal of the COLA is having a significant impact now on the recruitment and retention of workers, said Chief Officer in the Portfolio pf the Civil Service Gloria McField-Nixon. She said remuneration strategy needed to be re-examined, including what were intended to be short-term austerity measures, such as the 3.2% COLA cut in 2010, the elimination of annual increments for more than a decade and the recent ban on all within-grade salary increases. 

“Such policies, while intended to be short-term, have persisted over the long to medium term and are resultingin pay stagnation, as evidenced by the fact that almost one in three staff — including long serving employees — are on the lowest possible pay point within their salary grade and 7 in 10 are below the midpoint. This trend presents challenges to staff retention and morale, particularly in technical roles where competition is particularly strong. This review will have to be done while still balancing the requirement to comply with overall budget constraints,” she warned.

However, McField-Nixon pointed to the positive factor that three quarters of the civil service is Caymanian. “In terms of Caymanian representation within the civil service, we pride ourselves in the fact that this continues to remain high, with over 70% of our talent being Caymanian. As a national policy-setting institution, it is crucial that we lead by example in ensuring Caymanians have ample opportunities to be hired, developed and promoted and to contribute to the policy and legislative framework which governs this society,” she added.

Despite growing unemployment among local workers, however, only 62% of new core government recruits in 2011/12, mostly police and teachers, were local.

The number of Caymanians employed across the public sector varies greatly, from agency to department and from government company to statutory authority, depending on the size. Cayman Airways, a larger employer with 373 employees, has a 97% Caymanian work force, while the Health Service Authority, which is the largest of the authority employers, just over half the workers are local.  

See full report below.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    This overstaffed government is outrageous.


    The government must do something about it. A new government department must be created to fix this problem.

  2. The lone haranguer rides again! says:

    Pension health care, 9000 people sucking of off social services, we are in a lot of trouble people we need to tame the monster before it devours us.

  3. No room for young lawyers says:

    Hey Tara,

    Why don't you and Winston run an open meeting to speak to the dozen + qualified young Caymanian law grads who are DENIED articles in all local law firms?  Just ask…. it is shameful.  (excuses excuses and politicians offer no help)

    Stop kissing babies and make a difference.

    Where are the young local lawyers?  = Locked out!?! 

    • Anonymous says:

      The law firms take on many local law graduates. The fact there are only a dozen that haven't got articles proves that. In competitive markets like the UK a huge percentage of law graduates never get a training contract at all.

      • Anonymous says:

        And those that do not come to the Cayman Islands as paralegals, displacing capable Caymanians from roles, and advance to become partners, all without a Caymanian ever having applied or been known to be available. Miraculous!

    • Anonymous says:

      If we told you would you then stop whining?

  4. Expat jobs= no Caymanians says:

    6,000 in CS and 2,000 unemployed. = 8,000 locals.  I'm sorry, are there ANY Caymanians working in the private sector?

    Govt….this is WRONG.  So wrong.  The only thiing these numbers fuel is crime and politics.

  5. Educated Caymanians says:

    6,000 Government workers for 55,000 population?  This has to be out of whack….. We are not a socialist society.

    It is time to get Caymanians back into the private sector and off the nipple of work-permit fees to fund Gopvt.

    Wow, the politicians love the votes eh?  So much they pad the elections with bodies!

    • Rorschach says:

      We are not a socialist society.


       Oh, yes, we are…and to think differently is foolish…

    • Anonymous says:

      The CS in recent years was supposed to be removing excess staff.

      However there are sections within Government that needs staff. So the CS continues to grow.

      The big problem is that we need private sector initiatives to do some of the work that the Government does. Until that happens we will continue to have problems.

      • Anonymous says:

        How about we rollover all those persons who are not Caymanian and will become a burden on our economy and society if we let them stay or gain permanent security of tenure?

    • Anonymous says:

      "We are not a socialist society."


      Uh, sorry, the numbers indicate that we are in deed, just not in word. Hypocrisy is alive and well in Cayman.

    • Anonymous says:

      Also on a population of 25000 you would have the same amount of civil servants. The problem is the small numbers.

      Like two more murders and the percentage goes from 20 to 40% on a small population.

      And socialsme is a good thing. Wait until you are sick or cant find a job.

    • Anonymous says:

      I don't think this person has any concept of what "socialism" means.  I think they are probably a Fox News watcher.

  6. Anonymous says:

    The Cayman CS is in reality the worlds most generous social welfare scheme.

  7. Anonymous says:

    total joke…flies in the face of the miller shaw report……i hope the uk  know this and will continue to decline the constant ppm requests for increased borrowings….

  8. Anonymous says:

    Since very large numbers of civil servants are Jamaican it is misleading in the extreme to report they number as 12%. Just because people become Caymanian does not mean that they cease to have their nationality.

    • Anonymous says:

      pop question 2108 a child is born of a caymanian mother and a jamaican mother. What nationality is the child?

      And now is some jamaicans apply for cayman papers and get them what nationality are they?

      I do share your point in the sense that you can take the person out of the country but you cant take the country out of the person.

      But ps same goes on with those from the Philipines and Honduras as well.

      • Rorschach says:

        I understand how a child can have two "mothers" in the relationship sense, but how does a child have two mothers in the "born" sense of the word???

      • Anonymous says:

        Cayman papers are not a nationality or citizenship, only an immigration status. Most countries ( including Jamaica) pass on citizenship based on the citizenship of the mother).

    • Anonymous says:

      Because Jamaicans work hard and Caymanians do not. Simple.

  9. Anonymous says:

    haha HSA  half are jamaicans lmao

  10. Anonymous says:

    So Cayman Airways, with it's perks for family and friends and a 'glamourous lifestyle' attracts  97% indigenous workforce but the HSA, not so glamourous, perceived as hard, dirty work attracts less than 50%…

    See where this is going?

    • Anonymous says:

      That people prefer better jobs? 

    • Anonymous says:

      Yeah, the entity that trains its staff and has a history of promoting from within can have a high level of Caymanian staff.

      The entity that expects them to come in pre-trained and has a history of firing from within? Not so much.

      Thats the advantage of over-employment in a small jurisdiction. If you're a good worker you can find a good employer and go far. Bad employers become known.

      CUC, old Cable & Wireless, etc., would be the private sector proofs. (CUC website reports they are 93% Caymanian.

      Its getting harder now, of course, with fewer good employers out there. I feel sorry for the future. The pendulum needs to swing back but its going to be a strugle for that to happen. But such is the nature of society.

    • Anonymous says:

      I dont think that the majority of Cayman Airways employees would agree that they get perks…flight benefits barely make up for the baseline salaries, flight benefits do not pay CUC at the end of each month. It is only the higher ups in the company that get any real benefits and live the glamourous lifetstyle all the Jamaicans that have been in senior posts for many years so that indigenous caymanians cannot succeed. posts like the main HR post, the CEO, maintenance supervisor, head of pilots are all Jamaicans. While we are all in agreement we need CAL, we need an airline that is efficiently run and that affords opportunities for all CAYMANIANS.  We need honest accountable managers, not just those that fight for their own perks and forget that they have dedicated staff following behind them. Government needs to review all these happenings if they want to save costs as CAL is fully funded by government. And to stop wastage like lifetime benefits for all past board members, those are people in positions to afford travel, they should not get any benefits past the time that they serve on that board and only then for official board travel. Government needs to review CAL and other government owner companies that are draining the public purse like Turtle Farm, Pedro, Botanic Park its time to considerselling off portions so the private sector policies can help run them more efficiently.

  11. Anonymous says:

    I am eagerly awaiting the first poster to ask how many of the over 70%Caymanians in the civil service are "real"Caymanians.

    • Anonymous says:

      19.44- if the Cayman government deemed a person fit to recieve a Cayman Islands Passport, then they are all REAL Caymanians…any other inferernce is racist to say the least..

      • Anonymous says:

        No, you idiot. Having a Cayman passport has little to do with being a Caymanian. That has to do with being a BOTC by virtue of your connection to Cayman which is not the same thing. Some have the passport and are not Caymanian, while others don't have the passport and are Caymanian. 

        • Anonymous says:

          Given that all Caymanian passports are actually British ones and confer the same rights as a British one, your arguement 11.32 is null and void. Except for the fact that does not work in reverse…human rights issue???

          • Anonymous says:

            Wrong again. Do a little research. A Cayman passport holder has no right to work or live in the UK and requires a work permit should they wish to do so. Work permits are unavailable for a wide range of occupations. A Cayman passport holder wishing to live and work anywhere in Europe must first become Registered as a British Citizen. This is a discretionary process taking many months and with no assurance of success.

            • Anonymous says:

              It will be succesful as long as you don't have a criminal record.

        • Anonymous says:

          Absolutely correct. It is a shame that ignorance pervades throughout our society and even the highest echelons of Government. It is a disgrace that as a result even government is routinely breaking our laws.

      • Anonymous says:

        The poster at 19:44 was being sarcastic. He/she would agree with you 9:43

      • Anonymous says:

        I think that was the point that 19.44 was making…

      • Anonymous says:

        "i" before "e" except after "c" my brother. Any other any other "inferernce" would be a typo. Hey, no worries.

      • Anonymous says:

        You are emphatically wrong. First, the issuance of Cayman passports is handled by the FCO not the Cayman Government. Second, having a Cayman passport has nothing to do with whether or not the holder is a Caymanian.

        • Anonymous says:

          "Second, having a Cayman passport has nothing to do with whether the holder is a Caymanian". Don't you see how awful and pathetic that makes you Caymanians look in the 21st century? It means it's not worth a piss against the wind in a dark forest miles from nowhere and people like you seem to think ths is a triumph!!

      • Anonymous says:

        Racist? Sorry, you lost me. Nothing whatsoever to do with race.

    • Anonymous says:

      When these statistics were done I had my status for about three years.

      They still list me as non- Caymanian and by my born nationality.

      It is easy to work out how I am counted by the the department details.


    • Anonymous says:

      Good question. I'm glad you brought it up. Or is that going to be obscured as well as with the composition of the prison population?

  12. Anonymous says:

    These numbers prove that the efforts of both the former and current Deputy Governor are working. We accept the need to increase the number of police officers and other staff involved crime fighting. the austerity measures inflicted on civil servants cannot continue for the reasons outlined by Ms Mcfield Nixon. A very positive report released without a request. Another breath of fresh air!!

  13. anonymous says:

    Caymanians who don't work for the government, or who don't get poor relief, are so screwed. The civil service and politicians have to keep the work permits coming and the tourist construction going or else there will not be enough money coming in to pay their large salaries. You can't stop them because they (and their spouses or family) are a majority of the electorate. Meanwhile they demonize the expats because it gets votes, but they never actually do anything about it.

  14. anonymous says:

    Lord have mercy.

  15. Anonymous says:

     Despite government’s on-going battle to reduce the number of people it employs in an effort to cut costs the latest statistics reveal that a whopping 5901 people were still employed in the public sector at the fiscal year end for 2012. In other words they have proved once again that they are failures and would be fired if they were in the privated sector. Anyone still wonder why most companies still don't want to hire Caymanians?  This is why!

    • Anonymous says:

      Arggg. You people infuriate me so much. I don’t even know why I read these comments anymore.  The government need to this, they need to do that. It’s all common sense. Blah blah blah. If that’s the case, why don’t you all apply for a job and fix the problem? So many of you stay on the porch and have a fix for everything, yet cannot come up with a plan to deal with the aftermath of what you all are proposing.

      Cayman Infrastructure is built on work permits. Everyone and their dead dog knows this. The government does not pay for work permits. So employing more locals is beneficial for them, and the countries income. It is a known fact that government does pay less than the private sector too.  If these positions are not taken by a local, then someone will have to come in from abroad and work. One less permit to give the government and probably at a higher salary.  Government is a business, and by some of the posts in here, there aren’t many business savvy people in here.

      I agree that there are a few people who could not make it in the private sector, and while the government is keeping these people on, in my opinion, it is a lot better than giving them money and not getting anything back in return. At least these people do some type of work.

      I’ve listen to a lot of you say that these people need to be fired. Fine. Then what? They don’t have jobs, they will not be able to pay their mortgages, they obviously will shop less, and they buy less period, then what happens? Everything goes up, the bank rates will go up because there isn’t enough money circulating.  Groceries prices will go up because, people are buying less and they need to offset the costs of their establishment. Everything would sky rocket in Cayman. Let us not get into electricity bills. Government would have to foot some of the bills to help these people live. So more spending for government (or are you people proposing that government sit back and watch the local population suffer?) You all have said that these people can’t get jobs in the private sector, so what will they do? So narrow minded.

      There is a saying, common sense isn’t too common and many of you have proven that.

      If any of you have a fix for the mass exodus of jobs that you say must be cut in the CS, then please explain what these 1-2000 people will do for work? Come on.. Someone please give me a solution. Tell me how these locals will survive? Can the private sector support that number of people looking work even if they considered employing these lazy, no good Caymanians as what most of you foreigners like to say on the blogged in your own country?

      You see, I’ve come to a conclusion about some of you posters. A lot of you are in your private sector jobs, on permit and or just plain and simply ignorant. You are in a good position in your life, and cutting the CS doesn’t seem like it would affect you too.. but it would, here is why;  the first thing the government would do is, raise permits, this will help support people on aide from being out of jobs, and to help push the incentive to businesses tohire those no good locals so they can take them off of aide. (Those blasted Caymanians, they’re always messing stuff up for us important hard working people!)

      So tell me, who is benefiting again from reducing the tons of government jobs ?

      There is another saying; Be careful what you ask for.

       If it happens, many of the same posters in here who are crying wolf for the heads of CS workers will be the ones cursing that government screwed up again.

      By the way, I am Caymanian, I don’t work for the CS. I am only a student, who is not using their anger, but logical and understanding to see a bigger picture than just hoping the illusion of fire people will actually save the government some money.

      Good day, let the Thumbs down and the trolling begin!

  16. Anon says:

    It will never end.

    It’s where all caymanian go when they can’t find jobs.

    • Anonymous says:

      So Mr. Brains, if they can't get a job in the private sector and can get one in the CS what should they do? Stay in the street and starve?? Think before you post moron

    • Anonymous says:

      And probably it shouldn’t end. Cayman is too small a place to reasonable expect to have a massive talent pool to fill all the expat filled jobs.

      But CS has to shrink and that reduction has to me managed in an organic manner. Natural wastage, retirement at an appropriate age allows for those at the start of a career to progress. The biggest issue with any CS function is inefficiency, pure and simple. There is way to much paper work, not enough streamlined processes and not a great culture of working quickly…we all know this from any time any of us has had to deal with simple things like going to Immigration or getting your car licensed.

      Eg I can license a car online in the UK and it comes in the post. Or back in the day I go to the post office, show my inspection ticket and log book, give them money and I get a sticker. No photocopies, reprints, stapling and receipts. The licence is the receipt. In and out 5 nins. Not like that here….

      Just a thought…

  17. Anonymous says:

    Where are McKeeva'sPark Rangers?

    • Anonymous says:

      They're not Mackeeva's anymore, they now belong to Hon Premier Aldin, PPM kept them on the payroll and everyone else that had a play play job under the UDP. PPM off to a bad start, never even bothered to do an evaluation of civil service staffing and prematurely announced that there will be no layoffs of deadwood in the civil service.

      Disappointed PPM Voter. 

    • Knot S Smart says:

      They have all been put out to pasture…

      Just like Foolio and the rest of the UDP…

  18. Lawson Fown says:

    Is it a secret what the high ups in civil service make?  This article states that the majority of civil service people make less than $40,000 per year, plus their other perks  I think that's some pretty high pay, because I never had any wages that high in my life.  For the last ten years I've been getting by on less than $15,000 per year, and sometimes it's not easy.  I'm not Caymanian.  I live here because it's better than it was in the United States.  One reason I left the states is because the government was getting too involved in my life, and unfortunately the same thing is happening to people here.  It's sad.

    • Anonymous says:

      So in other words, because you're willing to work for poor wages, instead of agitating for better working conditions for yourself, your solution is everyone else should make less just to make you feel better. – You are a sad person.

  19. Anonymous says:

    Oh Christ! You mean that I can't blame this increase in staff on the PFML? You mean these people who have been saying (and getting shat on with thumbs down) the increase in civil servants is police, immigration, teaching, lawyers for the DPP etc might be right?? Oh my God. This report must be a FCO anti Caymanian initiative.

    Now could we have a report on the salaries AND BENEFITS paid to the chief executives of statutory authorities like : Pensions Board, Maritime Authority, Stock Exchange, Civil Aviation Authority, Monetary Authority. The reason I limit myself to those is I know the answer and the general public would be outraged. But CNS would (quite properly) not accept my figures.

  20. David Shibli says:

    Cayman, there is NO PLAN to get Cayman out of debt. Alden knows it, his lackeys know it and most of the people sense it.

    Instead, they are going to let immigration run rampant, debt will increase and so will crime (and with that, more expense).

    Property tax will rear its ugly head.

    Government accounts will remain buried under a morass of incompetence and over-regulation. Politicians will remain as talking heads.

    They promise the world and deliver NOTHING. Still the well meaning middle class seem to put up with it as they get squeezed tighter and tighter. The price of a basket of groceries is astronomical as are utilities and although there are sustainable solutions, NOTHING is done.

    Some of them have been in the same position for years and things have not improved, in fact, they have become worse. (You know who you are.)

    Tired of this. Please prove me wrong. I don't mind.


    • Anonymous says:

      What a miserable soul. There IS a plan to get us out of debt. It is called the FFR which is enacted into law. The UK govt. has said it will not grant any reprieve from it to the new govt. There will be no property tax. However, rather than simply lowering our debt we need plans to grow our economy, and to decrease Caymanian unemployment. Govt. will have to be creative to attract foreign investment.   

  21. Anonymous says:

    I don't suppose this FACTUAL stuff (from a born Caymanian etc etc Gloria McField Nixon) will make the slightest difference to the "I have been given to understand"  uninformed posters who tell us on CNS exactly what is happening in the civil service…..when of course it is not.