12 get jobs in tourism drive

| 23/01/2014

(CNS): The push to get local people placed in tourism sector jobs seems to have encountered a few hurdles. According to a release from the Cayman Islands Tourism Association (CITA), although officials avoided being direct about the details, CITA indicated that they faced various challenges during the Tourism Employment Drive (TED), which took place in October and November. Just twelve people have secured work as a result of the efforts, which is far short of the 200 positions that were targeted at the beginning of the initiative. CITA said that it would nevertheless be continuing with the drive this year, having learned some undisclosed lessons during the first attempt.

CITA said more than 120 individuals met with industry professionals and received training packages. A third of those, or around 40 individuals, went on to interview at tourism businesses, and around 10% of the original group of 120 were placed in jobs and are now working, it added. Officials from the association also stated that interview referrals and follow-ups to both prospective employers and employees are ongoing, and as a result more candidates are expected to be starting jobs before the end of this month.

The public private partnership campaign consisted of a five-district road show through Grand Cayman at which attendees registered with the National Workforce Development Agency received referrals for job interviews and skills training.

“The TED programme has helped us address practical challenges of connecting job seekers to the opportunities in the tourism industry,” said Lois Kellyman, Manager for Employment Services at NWDA, which partnered with CITA on the drive. “We look forward to working with Cayman Islands Tourism Association on more employment drives and calling on the tourism association as a resource in our ongoing job placement initiatives.”

However, according to the CITA President Ken Hydes, the initiative, in which he said people from the industry spent many hours, appears to have presented some difficulties.

“Decision makers in the tourism industry dedicated hundreds of hours to the TED programme, literally going district to district to meet with people,” Hydes said. “As with any new programme, this one had a few challenges. We are refining the processes and are encouraged by our results so far. With strong support from government and a commitment to an annual drive and ongoing follow ups, the tourism industry has a systematic plan to draw more Caymanians into our business.” 

Officials said that leaders from the tourism industry have since met with government “to discuss the lessons learnt from the Tourism Employment Drive (TED)”.

Organizers said that it had been quickly realized that there were “opportunities to facilitate training”, as it seemed candidates were not necessarily prepared for the jobs available. However, both CITA and government officials have avoided addressing what lessons were learned and what the challenges were. 

There was no indication if the very low number of placements was down to the lack of skills in candidates or other issues, if the sector did not have as many openings as anticipated, or if the candidates were not happy with the pay and conditions on offer.

Although there were only twelve placements, falling far short of the goal of getting 200 local workers into tourism, Employment Minister Tara Rivers was supportive of the initiative.

“This long-term partnership has real potential to create change and to ensure that Caymanians have opportunities to be active participants in the growing tourism labour market,” she said. “In addition to providing employment opportunities the focus of the partnership is on human capital training and development which is critical for successful employment and career advancement in the industry.”

The TED initiative was led by business owners and senior leaders in the tourism industry, notably Janette Goodman of The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman, Steven Hayes of Tropical Trader Restaurant Group and Markus Mueri of NM Ventures. Both Stepping Stones and CITA staff supported the ongoing data collection and follow-ups to help facilitate interview referrals.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    You know what is sad….

    That during the time that we had hundreds of Caymanians attend the job fair and only 12 got jobs we had hundreds of expats take out work permits and hundreds of them got jobs.  Now that is what burns me… The more things change the more they stay the same.

    • Diogenes says:

      Yopu cannot get a job if you don't apply for it – hundreds may have attended the job fair but only 40 interviewed. 

  2. Anonymous says:

    So true 18:42, I'm a CI parent, and I can forsee cries of "poor kids" when this "dont-Care" bunch revolts soon. The EdDept+Parents need to get real + check these boys+girls!! God Help us….. This has "nothing to do with Cayman", but then, maybe it does. I am a high school counselor and just spent one week teaching students how to develop and type their resume, fill out job applications and how to prepare and dress for a job interview. I would say that only 1/2 the students listened and completed the assignments. The other half could have cared less. It was such a frustrating week. They did not see why they needed to learn to complete a resume because "low level jobs don't ask for them". Why fill out practice job applications-" they know their addresses"- although there were so many spelling errors and mistakes no one would ever hire them looking at what I received as the finished product. Job interview? Please- "we know how to dress" UGH! They know it all and do not want to learn or listen. I have been doing this lesson for years and this is the first year where there was such a revolt. Good luck to this generation…….

  3. Anonymous says:

    Very simple. Set up a good trade school and train the people. Once this is done you will have

    1.  Barbers & Hair Stylist

    2.  Bartenders & Waitresses/Waiters/Bus Boys

    3. Chefs & Cooks

    3.  Cashiers & Receptionist

    4.  Dancers & Instructors

    5.  Electricians & Line men

    6. Food & Beverage Managers/Maitre d  

    7. Glass Cutters, Masons, Locksmiths & Plumbers

    8.  Hostess, Helpers

    9.  Mechanics/ Heavy Equipment Operators & Machinist

    10. Nurse Aids, Pharmacy Helpers

    There are so many different trades to offer our people. Every country equip their own people to have these trades.  Why is the Cayman Islands so different. Our people could be trained to the point where some stay at home and drive the economy while some are exported to other countries for exposure, such as new culture, experience and even more money.  Just think about it.  


    • Anonymous says:

      First, folks need to learn to wake up, have a shower, iron a shirt, and be where they said they would be, when they said they would.  

      It would also be incredibly helpful for people interested in tourism if they could speak english clearly enough to answer a telephone or provide directions. For the trades you mentioned the ability to read an instruction manual would be most helpful as well as the skills required to work a tape measure.

      Entitlement, poor parenting, and a failed public schoool system have contributed to a largely unemployable generation.  

    • Anonymous says:

      I completely agree. Charge a nominal fee for books, a little something to ensure commitment to complete diploma.  

  4. Otherview says:

    It is well documented that "finding a job", is really a job in itself. One must be willing to get up early, do the reaserch, compile a CV, contact potential employers, fill out applications, schedule 

    interviews, and be prepared to do this day in and day out until an opportunity is found a job secured.  Oh Boy !!………that just seems too hard, and just too much work!…….now where is my XBOX ?

    • Anonymous says:

      You missed out:

      Stay off crack, stay off beer, stay of ganja, stay off rum . . . . 


    • Anonymous says:

      Maybe the employers should consider filling outapplications for the privilege of hiring Caymanians. Then all the people who are vigorously seeking employment can view these applications and decide which company is best suited to their needs. They can then contact the employer and offer them a second interview to discuss the salary package, sick and vacation days, if this is satisfactory they can then offer their services to the company.

       Here’s my suggestions on some Compensation packages.

      Waitress, $45.00 per hour, plus double time for any hours over 20. 3 Day work week, 30 Vacation Days and unlimited sick days.

      Cook, $60.00 per hour, plus double time for any hours over 20. 3 Day work week, 30 Vacation Days and unlimited sick days.

      Cashier, $80,000 a year, plus 20% of the total receipts. 4 Hours per day plus unlimited paid personal days.

      Domestic Helper, 30% of total household income plus 10% for child. Does not require cleaning

      None of these positions should require previous experience or job skills and each will offer a $25,000 signing bonus.

  5. Anonymous says:

    I can't believe we cannot get people to be a divemaster. But the way it was done from Bob Sotos' day changed the way forever. 

    Back in those days people like Atlee Evans, Peter Milburn, Clinton Ebanks, Adrian Briggs, Don Foster and some more were not certified Dive Instructors. But were able to take people diving. Bob Soto was a US Navy diver. Bob hired those people because they liked diving and fishing and speafishing. He also took people snorkelling . You could operate a boat. Most of the foreigners do not have the knowledge of where the dive sites are at. It usually take weeks to months becuse there are a lot of them . You had to have the cross bearings in your memory or written down with drawings in a book. Anyone coming to work had to learn how to fill tanks. Not one of these so called Captains are legally qualified to captain a boat in the Cayman Islands. Because they don't know these waters or the dive sites prior to being hired. Around theworld most people will go diving with whoever they learn diving form.   

    If they come from north of florida the waters whether lakes or sea is dark , cold and muddy. What you would normally teach is slightly different. 

    When a customer comes to a place like Cayman they are certified open water diver. They do not need a instructor . They just teach and are usually managers. Divemasters lead dive groups or they go in as buddy teams . Divemasters would then record who went with who on a clip board which no one does here. Ususally they just ask, "do you have a buddy?" " yes I do" and off they go. Thats because they don't need a divemaster either. 

    We started using instructors on dives because the training for deep dives does not come with the guests. They learn the process when they first come here. After a few deep dives they are good to go.

    So the instructors have to go througy that same experience too. 

    So who is qualified??? It obviously doesn't take 14 years to achieve that experience. 

    So what happened?? Remember those first fellows I wrote about first?? Well when they were able to get money and had made so many customers. They opened up their own dive businesses. Everyone wanted to be dive shop owner because no one wanted to pay proper wages. 

    Can you imagine $1000 per month in this day plus tips . You can't survive. Plus everyone agreed that anyone else working at these companies had to be an instructor. Sad isn't it. Something so beautiful and wonderful with mor barriers to kepp you out. Because if they truly wanted Caymanians to come into the industry just provide the knowledg in schools.

    Plus pay properly.


    • Diogenes says:

      First, the dive operators do provide training. Second, the rates paid are consistent with international rates – no shortage of people willing to work for them . Last, you really have a problem with the industry moving on from the unregulated days ofold and being consistent withthe rest of the world?

    • Anonymous says:

      The Dive industry is a dangerous sport. It may has been fine in the past but today these types of Certifications are highly needed to insure the safety of tourists and visitors. Same goes for Boat Captains. You can’t just have anyone taking people out of Dive trips.

      • Anonymous says:

        The dive industry is a dangerous sport and yes you should be certified . But to take out trained tourist divers YOU only need to be a Divemaster not an Instructor.

        • Diogenes says:

          As far as PADI is concerned that may be strictly true, but read Sun, 26/01/2014 – 12:21 for the commerciial reality.  That's before you get into whether tourists feel comfortable – certified or not – with a DM rather than an instructor.   All that being said I bet dive shops here would be only too willing to hire local DMs, if they could find people prepared to do the work to get the qualification and then work in what at the end of the day is a low paid profession requiring hard work and anti social hours. 

  6. Anonymous says:

    So that's like what a 6% placement rate? Outstanding ROI.

    • Anonymous says:

      At least it is a start. Look at the cup as being 6% full instead of 94% empty.

  7. Anonymous says:

    The unemployment problem is a result of many things and includes poor parenting, poor education, a lack of accountability on the part of those seeking jobs and a lack of understanding that we are all part of a global marketplace.  

    I have had similar experiences to one of the posters.  I have interviewed applicants simply because they were Caymanian and like anyone else might have left something I would find important as an interviewer.  This has not often been the case.  Despite providing this opportunity when my time would be better served denying the candidate, I have had to deal with complaints to immigration and protests that I never wanted to consider the Caymanians.  As a result, I no longer extend myself to do such a thing when I already know the result will be the same.  The fact of the matter is that if I am looking for a professionally qualified lawyer or accountant with three years experience for a vacancy, the fact that you are planning to pursue a qualification later in the year whether you have the requisite experience or not does not make you suitably qualified for the post.

    We hurt our young people by giving them everything they ask for while requiring nothing in the way of work or service to build character, develop a work ethic or recognize that a degree does not excuse you from putting in more hard work.  Now there are some fantastic young Caymanians out there too but unfortunately, they are not the majority.  We must teach our young people that for many jobs simply being Caymanian is not a qualification.  They must be able to show an employer that they can add value, learn new skills and be a productive member of the team.  The time has come for people to stop expecting government to do it all for them.  

    The businesses that have come to Cayman are here because they are able to make a profit and provide their shareholders with value but make no mistake when their profits and added value are no longer achievable, these companies will either reduce staff awhile sending the work elsewhere, leave or close up the Cayman shop entirely.  None of these companies were started to do anything other that ultimately provide profitable returns for their owners and shareholders.  If they can no longer find that profitability in Cayman they will find it somewhere else no matter how loudly you gnash your teeth in protest or complain.

  8. Foreign Devil says:

    Yep 12 down 8987 to go.

    • Anonymous says:

      None to go.  There are plenty of jobs.  Only the criminals, drunks and junkies are unemployed and that it by choice.

      • Anonymous says:

        Please don't blame them we all know it was not their fault that they were forced into a life of crime. And what is a person to do when they cannot afford food when Liquor and drugs or so much more affordable.

  9. Anonymous says:

    If there was a will, there would be a way found to hire locals.

    One issue frustrating these 'initiatives' and the stats is: Everyone is a "Caymanian" these days!

    • "Expat" says:

      Oh oh, here we go again! Us and dem.

      • Anonymous says:

        Actually the poster implied it's all us

        • Anonymous says:

          And I bet the original poster can count his genuine expat friends on the six fingers on his right hand.

          • Anonymous says:

            Yup-I bet the original poster can count the ‘Expat’ fiends on just two fingers. But what makes them so “special” that they should be counted since they use the designation at their convenience-while applying for favoured immigration+residency priviliges?

            • Anonymous says:

              Could you imagine sitting next to someone this dull and self-righteous on a long flight?  I would jump.

    • Anonymous says:


    • Anonymous says:

      I am not

  10. Anonymous says:

    Only 40 people interviewed.  So the myth of local unemployment is well are truly exposed.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Maybe when one finds out a real business demands that they produce actual work for their salary so that the business can stay afloat, it might be asking a bit too much of them?

    • Anonymous says:

      I hope this new drive will lead to some sensible decisions as to what Cayman's tourism package should be, including new more afforadable hotels and flights. I am not suggesting that we go for the cheap market at all, but if we could get into the middle income market there would be enough jobs for everyone for sure (if they want them that is), and Government revenues would go through the roof.

  12. Anonymous says:

    How much time must businesses waste interviewing people who don't have an ounce of qualifcations for the job in order to satisfy everyone?

    • Anonymous says:

      Its a full time job! I need to hire someone to tell people I am not hiring them.

  13. Otherview says:

    You can be qualified and given a job that is accompanied by a suitable traing program,

    but then you must acctually show up in a timely fashion, be willing to learn, respect your superiors, and not call in sick every Friday. Here inays the problem.

  14. Anonymous says:

    Ok so after this whole programs only 12 people hired what does that tell you. It seems like Ezzard and his quest to find Caymanian replacement for the TLEP holders was also a failure, or how about the jobs drive in the East End or Al Suckoos Jobs Drive all these things with no major results tell me one thing and that is that the whole people are looking for jobs but no one will hire them is all BS. If you want a job they are out there, but you have to be willing to do what it takes to get one and it sounds like a lot of the unemployed are not. It’s time to put this myth to rest.

  15. Anonymous says:

    No offense to anyone but I would be curious to see some responses to my comments from an objective standpoint. I am curious to know if others in different industries have the same experience as I do. I am an expat who works in the dive industry and how has a role to play in hiring. I get to do intereviews of potential candidates. My experience is that people show up for interviews and tell me they don't dive, are afraid of diving, with forms partially filled out, I'm sure you get the picture.

    The best ones come with all the right things to say. They want to learn to dive. That's a good applicant. One that doesn't have any training, experience or relevent skills for the position but at least says they want to learn. FYI job applicants, when you say that I immediately look at your resume for evidence that you CAN learn, LIKE to learn, and HAVE learned something in the past. However, I don't find that evidence. Instead, these applicants expect their employer to teach them all the relevent skills. So, the employer is expected to hire someone who has nothing to contribute to the success of the business and, I suppose, hire someone else to mentor this person? All despite a complete lack of evidence in either the resume or the cover letter or the interview that the person will have any hope of success.

    In the dive industry the standard way people become employed the world over is to first go become a an avid diver. The person pays for a dive certifcation, likes diving so goes a lot, seeks further training, hangs around the dive shop, starts filling in, gains work experience, gets their professional diver training (divemaster cert) and eventually applies for full time paid work. For me that process took a year and a half where I basically worked in exchange for free dives and experience. The moment I was a certified instructor I managed to find work based on the previous experience so the investment on my part paid off. Here I am 14 years later reading resumes. My lesson: start at the bottom and work your way up.

    So the usual response when I explain to people how to get work in the dive industry is to leave and never be heard from again. I have had applicants call or come by in person to give a resume and I will donate my time to sit down and go over all the avenues for getting work in the industry but the applicant doesn't want to invest the time and money necessary to get that foothold. Okay okay, I know diving isn't the highest paid job on the planet but that often depends on the individual. I managed to do well enough. Lots of people start out divers and end up managers or owners of businesses. 

    Okay.. so I had one applicant from the TED initiative contact me. He was not a diver. I told him that if he wanted to come in I would still do an interview and we could go over what he would need to do to get a job in the dive industry and I would help him get started. No show. 

    My point in all this is that it seems to me that employers are busting their ass to try to get people employed and sometimes it feels like pulling teeth. I personally have participated in each and every program available to unemployed people to get them work experience. Is this how others see it? I get very disheartened because diving has given me a lot and I feel that more people who live in such an amazing place to do it should benefit from the strong and successful industry here. I would love tomentor someone to share how I have managed to go from simple diver to manager in charge of a successful business. I have tried many times. No one is interested. As soon as I say to someone that it takes about a year of diver training to get started and 14 years to get to where I am it seems like the interest in working in the dive industry is gone. 


    My suggestion is to stop spending so much effort on recruitment drives. Spend the effort on rebuilding the education system. Not schools, the system. 

    What is the point of trying to get employers to recruit people who don't know how to do anything and who don't seem interested in putting the time in to learn something?

    Again, I know this sounds like a rant and I'm sorry if it offends anyone as that is not my goal. 


    I, personally, have failed in each and every attempt to mentor a Caymanian into my position and so it will remain vacant when I get rolled over (or at least until another expat comes along who wants it I guess). 

    • Anonymous says:

      Heybud, thanks for posting, it is an interesting perspective (I gave you a thumbs up).  I don't however think it as bad as you have suggested.  The reality of the situation is that, particularly in the case of the mature applicant who needs a paying job now, your option, however helpful may not be the best economic decision for them at the point in time.  

      My guess is that someone looking for a job has short listed your dive shop because it does not appear to have the almost crippling education and job experience required for other positions.  They probably have no clue what the job entails but made an assumption (probably incorrect) that to get started in the field you will not be put in the water immediately, but would be required to clean the boats, prepare tanks, heavy lifting and moving etc.  If the message that is delivered following the interview is that there is no opportunity for a paying job now then they would most likely move on to the next option on their short list.  

      If there is an interest in the field you may not see them the next day or the day after that but perhaps in 10 years once they have stabilized themselves financially.  These guys want to work not get a lecture.

    • Anonymous says:

      I can understand your position but at the same time if the applicant is fresh out of high school they would not have experience or money to pay for classes but they are willing learn.  Couldn't you at least meet them half way and give them one lesson to see if they are really interested?

      • Anonymous says:

        This has "nothing to do with Cayman", but then, maybe it does. I am a high school counselor and just spent one week teaching students how to develop and type their resume, fill out job applications and how to prepare and dress for a job interview. I would say that only 1/2 the students listened and completed the assignments. The other half could have cared less. It was such a frustrating week. They did not see why they needed to learn to complete a resume because "low level jobs don't ask for them". Why fill out practice job applications-" they know their addresses"- although there were so many spelling errors and mistakes no one would ever hire them looking at what I received as the finished product. Job interview? Please- "we know how to dress" UGH! They know it all and do not want to learn or listen. I have been doing this lesson for years and thisis the first year where there was such a revolt. Good luck to this generation…….

      • Anonymous says:

        I have tried to meet them halfway. Some of the applicants have tried diving in high school due to the teachers being divers and running clubs for the kids. There is ample opportunity for teens to learn how to dive here without investing too much. I have supported many teachers over the years in getting them access to free rental gear and inexpensive learning materials. 

        The opportunities are there. Just don't seem the people I'm encountering taking advantage of them. 

        I guess I am just curious to know what other people in other industries were finding when they encounter people applying. 

    • Anonymous says:

      While I appreciate your experience may in fact be true, are you telling me all the Canadian and Australian young men working in our diving industry ahd diving experience, except for diving in dark, muddy lake waters?

      You said it took you 14 years? That seems quite long given your so-called experience. Did you get financial support/backing, fronting for others? That would make it easier to get there in 14 years OR less!

      But sure saying 14 years would be discouraging because most young people would erroneously see that as a lifetime.

      As there will be mush stereotypical comments made here about Caymanians, I will take state that based on my experience and intuition…….writer @ Fri 24/01 8:52 please admit you're a Canadian or Australian right?


      • Anonymous says:

        As another dive instructor, I can say that in my experience I had no financial backing while gaining my dive qualifications.  Every course I paid for out of pocket.  Every dive, whether in a cold muddy lake or in the warm clear waters of the Caribbean, was a dive I paid for out of money I worked to earn.

        The lowest level of professional qualification in the PADI system in Divemaster.  I understood that I was unemployable in the dive industry until I gained at least that level.  That required completion of Open Water, Advanced Open Water, and Rescue Diver courses in additional to a minimum number of overall dives prior to being eligible to start the Divemaster course.  

        In 5 years working in the dive business in Cayman I only once saw our company hire someone with only a divemaster certification.  That applicant already had enrolled in an upcoming Instructor Training course. All of the rest of the hires had the higher Open Water Scuba Instructor certification.  

        So in my humble experience, dive shops generally do not hire people without dive qualifications. Even in other locales it is rare to meet a dive boat captain or other shop staff member without at least a Rescue Dive card.

        Several dive shops in Cayman offer about 50% off for locals. That is a huge subsidy I never had. And even better, there are occasional free Open Water courses for high school students – I know, I taught one.  I had five students – only one completed the course and earned certification.


        • Anonymous says:

          Correct. Dive shops do not hire non professional level staff simply because they can't lead fives or teach and therefore make money for the business. In the same vein there is little point in hiring a Divemaster because they too are limited as to what they can teach as opposed to a Open Water Instructor, again limiting the shops income stream. To be honest you would pay a DM pretty much the same as an OWSI here anyway so what's the point of hiring the lower qualified person?

      • Fred the Piemaker says:

        Take the chip off your shoulder and read their post – he said 18 months to get paid employment – 14 years to get where he is today.  

        As for diving in dark and muddy waters – guess what, a dive instructor used to working in those conditions will find Cayman a breeze – its a damn sight easier, rather than a handicap, to adjustto the easy conditions here.  NOt that that is relevant to the essence of the comment – that in some industries you are expected to show that you have put in the effort first and work ypur way up, which is one of the central problems we have.  On the one hand youth not willing to do the miles and sweat equity to earn a job, on the other expats who are cheaper, show attitude and have already assembed the experience.  

        • Anonymous says:

          Sorry FRED THE PIEMAKER @17:46 bit defensive I'll say.

          But still no confession re the nationality eh?

          Don't worry I trust my instincts and FYI, I was raised by a Canadian and when I lived there had neighbours and friends who learnt to dive in those lakes, didn't mean to hurt your feelings. If I had time and money, would do the proper research but again I could bet (if a gambling type of person) the writer is an Australian or Canadian.

          I am shocked everyday to see and hear how the great number of Canadians, who have come here with literally no qualifications, no exposure to the rest of the world can convince Caymanians they know it all. Immigration dept could easily examine how many have come here as waitresses but now qualified 'corporate administrators' in this top financial jurisdiction, yet had no experience except for working at a fast food restaurant etc in towns no one ever heard of and not talking about places like Toronto.

          So you cannot convince me that if these dive operations were given no choice they would see how many young Caymanians would take up those positions. At the end of the day if Caymanian men want to continue to give foreign men the opportunities to work and lead their country, so be it. I too have my options and will exercise those if I have to because I have tried to help and or point out the unfairness in employment opportunities.

          • Anonymous says:

            I'm not sure what a confession of my nationality means. I pointed out in my post that I'm an expat. I am Canadian. What difference does that make? My point in my post is about how in an international labour market, the way into work is to start at the bottom and to work your way up. 

            Do you know how many resumes I see for applicants who don't hold down any job for more than a few months? What does that tell me? That any effort at training this person will be money down the drain as they will leave within months. 

            When I interview applicants and ask about their good traits and bad it's the applicants themselves who admit to being late a lot, sick a lot, having discipline problems, finding it difficult to learn anything, finding the work at their last job boring. This is from the mouths of the applicants. Why would I hire any of these people when they are essentially telling me that they don't want to work? I've had one applicant tell me when asked if they would be willing to learn diving "oh no, I would be afraid to do that". Why is she even at the interview??

            Yet, someone the blame rests with me. I didn't do enough to provide opportunities for Caymanians to find work. That's the feeling that I get from many of the posts on here, that's its my fault. 

            Well.. no worries. I'll be gone this year due to rollover and I'll be taking my skills and experience with me. It's unfortunate that no one wanted to learn from what i had to offer. 

            Most countries consider this a 'brain drain' and treat it like a problem. Cayman actively pushes out the very people who could contribute to society. I guess all those people who couldn't even manage to get a job at the bottom and work their way up will now have an opportunity to apply for my vacate position. Good luck. 


      • Anonymous says:

        It took me just over one year to get the training needed to find paid employment. I started as a manager 4 years ago. I'm at 14 in the industry now. 


        My point when I tell people that I've been at it 14 years isn't to discourage them. It's to ENCOURAGE them that after one year of hard work and investment at low or no pay, I managed to secure myself in a 14 year career in the industry, now considered to be an important part of the broader industry as a whole. 

        No, I didn't have financial backing. I paid for everything myself. My courses were at full price, unlike, as another poster has pointed out, the sometimes free or heavily subsidized courses offered to local kids. 

        As for Canadian or Australian divers who come here with no experience to Cayman waters. Yep.. you are right.. many of the new instructors in this industry have little to no experiences. Guess what. They bust their ass getting it here because they love diving. What stops local unemployed youth from doing the same?

        Don't tell me it's the Canadian and Australian divers taking their jobs because that is a cop out. There are Caymanian dive instructors who do a good job for their employer. Unfortunately, I can think of only a few. There is room for many more if they would just take an interest and do some training, show some initiative. Don't always find the reasons why they can't. Find the reasons why they CAN.

    • Foreign Devil says:

      Bo Bo can make more money on th social services gravy train.

  16. Anonymous says:

    " that Caymanians have opportunities to be active participants in the growing tourism labour market” Tara said. Really? Is the tourism labour market actually growing? Stats please…

  17. Anonymous says:

    what were the job positions that were filled?

  18. Anonymous says:

    Only 12 out of 200 jobs, what a freaking shame. Why?

    • Anonymous says:

      Because imaginary unemployed people can't get jobs.

    • Anonymous says:

      You really don’t know why? Or you just don’t want to face the truth about this "so called" Caymanian unemployment crisis?

      The new is always filled when something happens regarding immigration and work permit holders that are “”taking all the jobs” as the saying goes, but with things such as this, details are always scares or people never know as this article claims.



  19. Anonymous says:

    'No comment'

  20. Anonymous says:

    Looks like the private sector has a better command at tackling this problem.

    • Really says:

      Really? How many jobs with university degrees were placed with the Baraud ReStart program?! That was a PR stunt pure and simple. The recruiters still only place overseas candidates for any decent job. Ask any local how the job search goes with expat recruiters!

      • Scotty says:

        Perhaps becase the so-called degrees are from on-line universities and are not up to the proper standards.

  21. Mystic Meg says:

    Let the games begin!!! Let me guess…This article was posted Thursday afternoon… By mid Friday morning we will have tens of comments – one third will be the ridiculous stance that caymanian workers are useless and it is pointless to even try to find employment for them – yawn! Another third will be about something equally ridiculous – that untrained Caymanians deserve to be paid better then the average tourism industry wage – equally YAWN! And somewhere in between all that dross… one third of the comments will be something marginally productive, which try to deal with important questions like… How do we get a lost generation back to work? How do we provide the right training and opportunities in ALL segments of the economy for the next generation? CNS devotees, please try and see through the BS and lets look at these twelve as a minor victory and not amassive failure. As the saying goes… From tiny seeds, grow mighty oaks.  



    • Anonymous says:

      You forgot one line item in your post.

      "How do we get the lost/next generation to actually give a dam?"


  22. Anonymous says:

    Shameful result. 

  23. Anonymous says:

     How many people does the NWDA have registered? I will venture a conservative bet to say probably 75-120. With that said, this PROVES that the NWDA is useless, hopeless and meaningless if only 12 people can secure jobs. The very leadership of the NWDA is questionable!! Seems the NWDA is a dumping ground for HR people who aren't able to hold on to a real job in the real world. But I will tip my hat to 12 persons getting jobs, hopefully they won't be ostracized now and forced to quit.

    • Really says:

      I agree the NWDA needs a shake up, but we need to give Dr Tasha, Tara, and Winston a chance.  They will return from the UK next week and instead of Press releases and flesh pumping (handshakes) photos- all 3 of them need to sit their butts down at the NWDA for 30 days, roll up their sleeves, stop the govt circus of why we can't fix it, and truly invest themselves on the front lines for change!

      The middle management of the NWDA has not changed so until leadership leads, nothing will change.  I think the PPM is committed. The radio show I heard on Rooster sounded promising, but it will take Tara, Tasha, and Winston moving their desks to the NWDA to fix this.

      Otherwise, the seasoned Civil Servants know how to weather a storm (Look at Mary Rodrigues.) Change will only come with NEW leadership and better management.

  24. The Seeker says:

    We cannot handle everything in a Crisis management mode, it has been done, tried and failed in this country.  There has to be serious thought given to labor endeavours, for it pertains to people's life, people's survival. If Governmentr and the Tourism sector are serious, in not only providing jobs for the presently unemployed but also in caymanizing  the industry, then there must be more than lip service.  There ought to be continuos sessions of not only recruitment but also education programs that match all available positions  coupled with mentoring and monitoring to the required standard. Of course there will be cases where the level of proficiency and/ or capabilities are not attainable, however, these should not be discarded and tcan be referred to other areas of  work  that match the individuals   aptitude levels. 

    In the situation we are in where there has never been high levels of unemployment and therefore  no experience in handling these situations, there must be careful thought give to actions to be taken forgetting about the political mileage to be gained by band aid solutions which at the end of the day does not solve the problem.

    Ten percent achievement may be commendable to some, but the other 90% can't take that record to the supermarket.  Think, plan, process.

  25. Anonymous says:

    I can't wait to see the comments on this! I think I will say no more. Over to you, Mr Miller.

  26. Anonymous says:

    The tourisme industry prefers the workpermit, which gives them full control over the worker. 

    Lets stop this charade . . . . .


    • Anonymous says:

      So the tourism industry has total control over its work permit employees, eh?  You do realise that tourism industry workers have the most job mobility of all expat job classes, don't you? They switch jobs all the time because the Work Permit Board understands that a lot of them are exploited by employers who won't pay salaries, won't pay medical insurance/pensions, won't pay credit card gratuities, won't pay over time/holiday time, etc. So they are allowed to switch jobs more often, whereas in other professions it can be quite dificult.

      It's true that some tourism industry employers don't want to hire Caymanians because they can't exploit them like expats, but they can't hold their expats in indentured servitude either.

      The truth of this issue is that there are a lot of Caymanians who simply don't want to work in the tourim industry because it's hard work with long hours and you have to work weekends and holidays and nights,etc. The tourism industry isn't for everyone, and it's not the most family-friendly of jobs, but those who embrace it can make a nice living. It's a fantastic way for young people to some work experience and learn some customer service skills ( and I'll bet that all or most of the 12 that got jobs are under 25 years of age).   The fact that they couldn't get more than 12 of the 200 spots filled, and that only 40 people went to interviews for a job, is absolute proof that not many Caymanians are interested in the positions. 

      The charade we need to stop is that of thinking that expat are taking tourism jobs from Caymanians. Because it's become more difficult to hire expats in these jobs, and some of the jobs are going unfilled, service levels are lowering all over the island. This is hurting our tourism product, and the lack of spending bodies is hurting our economy.



      • The Seeker says:

        Boy some people fall down on their head when they were small. The fact: wages are extremely low in the sector and the gratuity obviously cannot fully make up a consistent living wage. Yes the immigrant workers are being exploited and the Caymanians workers refuse to be so treated. MSG,a look a boo boo d.

        • Anonymous says:

          I think you might want to walk in the shoes of some of those immigrant workers beforeyou go suggesting that we are all being exploited. The people that I know working in the watersports industry are living the dream not being exploited. Some do very well on tips and base pay. By the way, to get tips you have to impress customers with quality of service. Hint hint

    • Diogenes says:

      so they are responsible for only 40 people even bothering to turn up for interview?

      • Anonymous says:

        Why bother to show up for an interview, if you know the job is already taken by a workpermit.


        • Truthseeker says:

          So don't show up, then bitch about expats taking the jobs. Self fulfilling prophesy!

  27. Anonymous says:

    Why on earth is anyone so surprised????? This is typical…the majority really don't want to work, just moan and groan that they can't find a job and moan and groan about how "foreigners" are taking their jobs…they have to blame someone….

  28. Anonymous says:


    That no one is surprised over the out cone this is far more than I expected as they simply don’t want Caymanians in that industry let us face it this land is not for us anymore.

    • Anonymous says:

      You are right, as someone in charge of hiring, I DON'T want someone working who isn't qualified, isn't interested in getting qualified, and who claims to be afraid of the very activity that they are supposed to be promoting. HUGE surprise that I don't hire someone like that. 

      btw – the best one yet was the applicant who showed up wearing board shorts and a beach towel only to ask if the interview could be rescheduled because of plans to party on the beach.

      Yes – this really happened. 

  29. Anonymous says:

    Why why why? Let's make it public knowledge! 

  30. Anonymous says:

    I guess not to many people were interested in working in the Tourism business, maybe it's the hard work and long hours involved. But I guess they should still avoid hiring expats even after trying to hire Caymanians.

  31. :)) says:

    Good Job Tara. Although there is not much headlines about your accomplishments on CNS,you will be getting back in for another term if you keep standing up for Caymanians.  Please don't forget us! 

  32. Anonymous says:

    Unlike the way things work within CIG you can't just magic private sector jobs out of thin air.

    Moral – In the real world there are no free meal tickets. 


  33. Anonymous says:

    I work in the restaurant business and have been involved in the TED initiative and am pleased to see the support we've gotten from both our industry association and the Tourism Ministry.  This is a great example of a win, win, win effort.  The long term commitment to this program is what will make the difference.  Thanks!

  34. Things Remain the Same says:

    Same old tactic "No Caymanians were suitably qualified…"

    That poisonous phrase that has kept so many Caymanians back… Things will not change until Caymanian are ownership of these business increases.

    • Anonymous says:

      or they work at getting suitable qualified……..

      but seems too much work so let's blame the expat partial business owner

    • Anonymous says:

      Has it ever occurred to you that what keeps Caymanians back is not being suitably qualified?

      It's a global marketplace for labour. To get jobs, you have to compete not just be of a particular nationality. 

      Being involved in the hiring where I am, I have seen countless resumes come across my desk without a shred of relevent skills or experience. In my books, that counts as "not suitably qualified". In fact, nevermind suitably, try not even REMOTELY qualified. By the way, in my industry to get the first level of qualification takes a couple hundred bucks and a weekend of training.

      The business I work for has reduced the minimumrequirements for employment to the bare bare minimum compared with worldwide standards but still the applicants show up unwilling to obtain even that or expecting the employer to train them. Why should an employer spend their business money on providing this when the applicant has shown no investment or initiative to do it?

      If the government wants the citizens here to have jobs then I recommend two things:

      – make the country an attractive place to settle and set up businesses. the more people here the more the economy will grow

      – education


      Neither of these will be overnight fixes which is why they will never happen. Efforts in these areas won't get votes.


    • Anonymous says:

      well maybe it's time you stopped waiting for opportunities to land on your lap, and instead go out and seek them then!

    • Anonymous says:

      What else do you want exactly? Caymanians own 60% automatically of any business, weather the do jack all or not, Caymanians run the government and control immigrations, or am i missing something?

      Things will not change until Caymanians stop stabbing Caymanians in the back that’s what, or maybe until some learn how to do actual produce tangible work for their money and stop complaining for about others like its someone else fault

  35. Smells Fishey says:

    12 measley jobs? You're kidding me right?

    • Anonymous says:

      Probably not measly if you are one of the 12!  Congratulate the 12, move on with a 'lessons learned' and get to work on working out a plan on the rest.  Connecting people to oportunities is the only way to get people into work, a CV on your desk tells you nothing of the character and work ethic of the individual, this kind of 'meeting' allows people to kick the tires.

      Looks like it needs a bit of tweaking, but still a start.  If nothing else 12 people have a job they didn't have last month.

      • Anonymous says:

        What will be interesting is whether they still have them next month

  36. Anonymous says:

    What were the problem they encountered. Also why was it that only 40 out 120 the received training packages actually got interviews. Did they not complete the training ? It’s baffling that only 12 people got jobs when there were 200 available which included training. And unbelievable that only 120 met with them when there’s apparently thousands of people unemployed. You’d think people would be kicking their doors down for this opportunity. Maybe it had something to do with the fact that they mentioned people would have to work hard.

    • Anonymous says:

      We both know we won’t ever get such details, it’s easier to blame someone/something else, besides information divulging to the public seems to only be extremely detailed when its information about permit, status grants, and Cubans that escape from the detention center, it’s the norm round these parts.

  37. Anonymous says:

    You can have excuses or you can have results. Not both.

    I think we have excuses here.

  38. Anonymous says:

    the mythology of caymanian unemployment is expsposed again along with the stupidity of caymanian immigration laws……