Unemployment ‘Achilles heel’ for PPM

| 31/12/2015 | 114 Comments
Cayman News Service

Cayman Islands Premier Alden McLaughlin in LA (Photo by
Dennie Warren Jr)

(CNS): The number of jobless Caymanians is proving to be the Achilles heel of the PPM government, according to the premier. In his New Year statement to the nation setting out his administration’s ambitions for 2016, Alden McLaughlin said the prospects for the year ahead were bright but admitted that at 8.3%, Caymanian unemployment remained “unacceptably high”. He said almost 1,000 Caymanians turned up looking for work in the Christmas clean-up, which was a reality check. 

“The unemployment level of Caymanians is just too high in an economy that is expanding and where there is clear evidence of significant job creation. Since this administration took office in May 2013, work permit numbers have increased from about 17,000 to 22,000 presently. Yet Caymanian unemployment remains stubbornly high.  Something is very wrong with this equation,” the premier stated.

McLaughlin acknowledged some significant issues standing in the way of employment for some. However, he maintained that it was not the case for most Caymanians and it was up to the private sector, and not government alone, to deal with the issue, as he blamed employers for not giving locals a chance.

“Everyone calls on government to do something about unemployment but the reality is government can only do something about it if we can get the private sector to hire more local people. One of the significant changes that I have observed over the course of the last 10 to 12 years is the attitude of local businesses to giving Caymanians a chance,” he said.

“There is a reluctance these days on the part of many businesses to take on Caymanians and invest in training them to do the job,” the premier said, as he called for a “sea change in the business community” to take on Caymanians who might not meet all of the employment requirements precisely and to train them.

Having met Chamber of Commerce leaders and members of the hospitality sector, the premier said he was planning to meet with building contractors as well to explain government’s expectations over local employment.

“The time for excuses has passed,” McLaughlin warned. “The great push over the course of the balance of this term is to deal with what I consider the Achilles heel of this administration – Caymanian unemployment – and to get as many of our people back into good jobs.”

He added, “The many projects that Government and the private sector are undertaking will provide many employment and economic opportunities and Caymanians must share in them.”

In a long statement reviewing what he said were his government’s achievements so far and expectations for 2016, he also claimed credit for the changes in the fortunes of the public purse.

“The financial forecast for Fiscal Year 2016-17 shows operating revenues to be $896 million while operating expenditures are expected to be $851 million, resulting in a forecast surplus of $64 million,” he said, adding that by June government expected to meet all the requirements of the Public Management and Finance Law, fully complying with all the Principles of Responsible Financial Management.

“This will mean we will no longer be required to have our proposed financial plans vetted and approved by the United Kingdom. For the first time since 2009, the Cayman Islands Government will have full control and responsibility for the country’s budget and finances,” McLaughlin noted.

By sticking to its financial plans, government had reaped the rewards: Cayman’s relationship with the UK has been restored, the debt burden reduced and cash balances increased, allowing the US$312 million bond due in November 2019 to be paid, and government was also in a position to continue the delivery of surplus budgets, the premier said.

Brushing off Alva Suckoo’s resignation from the PPM yesterday and Anthony Eden’s one month ago as “the unfortunate departure of two of our members”, McLaughlin claimed that the government remains strong and would continue to work for the betterment of the people and country.

Premier Alden McLaughlin – 2016 New Year’s message

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Comments (114)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Same words, same promises every four years or so…same fools listen..

  2. Anonymous says:

    Three things a country needs to do to solve the unemployment problem: Education, education, and education. Positive discrimination for Caymanians creates an entitlement mentality (“you’ve got to give me the job, it’s the law”) and makes many young Caymanians unemployable. It’s not just qualifications that count it’s also attitude for the job. You cannot positively discriminate your way out of high Caymanian unemployment, you have to PROPERLY educate the youth to be competitive in a very tough marketplace.

    • Anonymous says:

      Wanted: Full time Filipina Nanny/Domestic Helper
      Looking to hire a full time nanny / domestic helper for 2 young children. To begin employment approx. February/March. Hours: M-F / 7:30am – 5:30pm

      Salary approx $1200 CI (based on experience)

      No Discrimination Yeah right. This was taken out by an Expat

  3. Anonymous says:

    What if the government mandated to reduce the number of work permits by 10% per year assuming GDP growth does not exceed 3% in any of those given years. If the average price of a work permit is $5000 (haven’t seen any recent figures on averages), this would be a loss of government revenue of $11 million the first year. With a projected surplus of around $50 million the $11 million could be absorbed without undue hardship. This gradual process would enable the rebalancing of the workforce without crippling the coffers.
    Another, more radical idea, would be to reduce every permit to $1000 across the board. This would immediately reduce government coffers substantially and instantly wean CIG off the addiction to work permit revenue. With any addiction, you can predict withdrawal symptoms. New revenue streams would need be created or others increased, quickly. Property tax comes to mind. Wouldn’t need to be drastic, just enough to replace the lost work permit revenue. Most foreign owners would already be used to paying property tax, and others would adapt I predict. A mass exodus or sell off is unlikely as the market would be flooded and properties wouldn’t sell. This would ensure an instant revenue replacement and an aggressive repossession protocol would support the system if taxes go unpaid.

    History has shown that micro-managing the immigration/work permit process is futile. All previous attempts were inefficient and did not produce the desired results. Simplify it, make the pain be felt on the coffers, and the CIG will find solutions. It needs to be drastic. Subtle efforts will not achieve the desired results.

    I also support the trades school be launched tomorrow, if not sooner.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Someone really needs to get honest with the unemployment issue in this country. I listened to talk radio this morning and heard the exact conversation I heard 5 years ago about unemployment.
    There are different unemployment groups and each group has unique issues and there is not a one answer fits all solution to the problem.
    There is a core issue of work ethic that upsets people that is the elephant in the living room. Obviously there is a reason why employers are willing to pay the money for a work permit over hiring locally. Until people are willing to get to the truth of the matter and deal with that nothing will change.
    The trade school doesn’t happen because existing businesses do not want competition.

    • Anonymous says:

      Although the politicians won’t admit it, it’s very simple: Hire a WP holder and you can get rid them on a whim. Hire a Caymanian with a entitlement attitude — the country owes them a job — and your stuck with them forever, or in front of a tribunal if you have to let the, go. The cost of a WP is well worth the flexibility! The combination of WPs and positive discrimination for Caymanians is a primary cause of unemployment for Cayman’s youth.

  5. Anonymous says:

    CNS: Has anyone challenged the Premier to site the precise origin and date of his unsubstantiated 8.3% unemployment figure? I doubt anyone else noticed, but the latest published ESO update (a CIG department employing 20 people) had unemployment at 5.6% as at Sept 2015. How does the Premier explain the loss of almost 3% of jobs over a single calendar year quarter? What is the point of having an entire staffed ESO department in CIG compiling statistics if even the Cabinet won’t bother to rely upon and utilize their real world research? Who are we supposed to believe and why would we continue to pay for the other? Just wondering. #20morewastedjobsapparently http://www.eso.ky

  6. Anonymous says:

    It is time to do away with work permit fees, reduce import duties and implement personal income tax. Government will make revenue whether they grant a permit or not.

    • Anonymous says:

      Why would anyone pay income tax , with no benefits ?
      No proper retirement plan , no health insurance after age 75 , only social services for the entitled , as it stands now
      No road & infrastructure investment , but huge cost of living
      An new airport with no jet bridges , but an upcoming huge debt in the C.B.F

      Exodus :

      • Anonymous says:

        History has shown that direct taxation without representation doesn’t end well. If that were not the case, the crown would already be leveling taxes on all 15 of its British Overseas Territories.

  7. Pia Pia Boy says:

    The PPM and its ministers are a complete joke but the real joke is on us the Caymanian people who foolishly believe they are there to act in our best interest!

  8. Anonymous says:

    When employers can pay $3 to $4 dollars to people from other countries where these kinds of salaries are enough to maintain their families at home, then you will see no changes in the employment problems for Caymanians. I visit several offices on a regular basis, where the employees are non-Caymanian, and I will never understand why my grand-son with an extensive education cannot find a job here that pays more than CI$4 an hour. It is much too easy to get a temporary permit that can be changed after 90 days to GOL

    • Anonymous says:

      In late April 2015, Commerce Minister Wayne Panton went on the record stating that the Cayman Development Bank was “unable to offer loans to small businesses at this time”, that the resources had been “squandered” by previous regime, and acknowledged that “finding startup capital is the biggest stumbling blocks for a lot of young entrepreneurs”. It seems strange that this same Cabinet can put a moratorium on new CDB debt – and mull disbanding it altogether, later find a spare $1mln to hand out to the unshaven at Christmas, and still have the political temerity to complain about lack of opportunity for our youth.

  9. Anonymous says:

    It amazes me that our government is surprised at the high Caymanian unemployment. It is even more amazing that they think that they can successfully appeal to the employers to be kind and generous to help our people. No one can fairly blame the current government or even the previous government, but the blame falls collectively to some extent on all previous governments that succumbed to intimidation by the companies that moved here.

    My personal opinion is that it started when we allowed the word Caymanian to be removed from our laws. In particular, I believe that this unemployment situation was inevitable when we renamed the Caymanian Protection Law and dismantled the spirit of that law. I would encourage our legislators to read the legislative records of people with common sense who explained why those laws needed to be created in the first place. I remember Mr. Berkley Bush and Ms Annie Bodden talking about it at a meeting and expressing their concern about Caymanians being unable to compete in their own country because of factors other than qualifications. They understood that the imported labour would eventually dislike the local labour and that it was the legislature’s responsibility to protect the locals, hence, “The Caymanian Protection Law”.

    Interestingly for many years since that law was dismantled, the dislike of Caymanians by the companies was covert. But I can assure you that while it may still be somewhat covert in public, it is no longer covert in the management meetings of these companies. The management meetings are all about shareholder equity and rarely about social responsibility. Social responsibility is an agenda item in these meetings as a part of their marketing plan for more imported labour. Human Resource Manager who can successfully navigate the immigration department are of the greatest value. No one can really blame these companies for their self serving behaviour, but it would be a blind government that thinks that they can appeal to the social responsibility of these companies to hire and train Caymanians, just because they are Caymanians.

    My view is that we have to “be the change that we want” and legislate our way out of this and not succumb to intimidation. If the company fail to implement a succession plan, then deny the work permit, period. If they threaten to leave if we don’t give the work permit, then shake their hand, thank them and wish them well in their future endeavors. I can guarantee you that someone else will want their business. If we force them to help us look after our local people we will remain the amazing place that caused them to come here in the first place. If we fail to look after our people, they will leave anyway.

    What is the point of building an amazing economy if such a large number of Caymanians are unable to participate? Who are we building it for?

    To our Legislative Assembly: Do your job! Protect our people! Maybe that’s what it will take to inspire our youth.

    • Anonymous says:

      I had the opportunity to watch several of the Christmas cleanup/beautification crews working around the AL Thompson round about. Almost 10 people were doing the job with poor results, half of them sitting while working, they yellow painted the grass in some parts and the work speed? worst than Flow… and those are the ones who wanted to work. if you, check Island electronics security feed for that area on that period, you will see a high def video of it.

  10. Anonymous says:

    It is election time. In the year before an election things get nasty. It is a good idea to put your HR staff on a bonus related to the work permit approval success rate at such times. But be ready to outsource if you get a knock back. That is the lesser of two evils by far.

  11. Sharkey says:

    Are we saying that Caymanians cannot talk proper, do not have work ethics. History teach us that if the parent and teachers do not educate we fail as a society, and the kids are lost. So who’s fault is this ? I think that the biggest part of the problems is in the education system and that’s Government run, but parents need to care if their graduate cannot read or write. .

    • Anonymous says:

      Me teach no speak patois, dat is the problem, Dats ok cause me complain to me cayman friends who be banton an gut these furiners out. Soon come an all dem teachers and president be jamaican, then you see all our grades get better.

    • Anonymous says:

      You atrocious grammar and spelling goes a long way to prove your own point. “Who’s fault”? Yuck, yuck and thrice yuck.

    • Nicole says:

      As a Concierge speaking proper English, i find it particularly frastrating calling these restaurants employing foreigners who cant speak English! Try spelling a visitors name out for them and they don’t even know the alphabet! Try getting reservations with these Restaurants in Cayman with these illiterates! Believe me, it isn’t that Caymanians cant speak properly! LOL

      • Anonymous says:

        I completely agree with you. Hiring people in the service industry who cannot speak English seems to be the recent craze in Cayman and it drives customers like me up a wall. I recently had dinner at a very established low key restaurant (no names named). Our waitress hardly spoke any English, didn’t understand the basic questions about the food (e.g. is the fish deep fried) and then ended up brining one of us the wrong dish because she didn’t understand what the person had ordered! That restaurant has a huge turnover and serves alcohol, which means that any young Caymanian could make good money in tips working there. A shame.

      • Anonymous says:

        You could not make this stuff up. Someone writing in a manner that one would expect from a struggling 9 year old is getting on their high horse about the standards of English.

      • Diogenes says:

        Your command of grammar and the apostrophe reminds me of the Donald Rumsfeld quote: “…we know there are some things we do not know. But there are also unknown unknowns – the ones we don’t know we don’t know”

  12. Anonymous says:

    Businesses know the Premier cares only about w/p revenues … the laws are being ignored and immigration enforcement seems more worried about if there is birthday cake then compliance.

    • Anonymous says:

      There are plenty of existing laws and policies that are not enforced by CIG departments (including Immigration), and each successive Cabinet and Premier pretends it’s someone else’s job to oversee that the CIG performs. Alden has failed just as badly as McKeeva in that regard. Lots of hot air with no semblance of CIG accountability or understanding of the ultimate responsibility of their position as Premier and Cabinet Ministers.

  13. Anonymous says:

    Read the New Year’s Message … the ship was not an easy one to get back on course after McKeeva and crew in 2013, so thank you PPM for all your work. Keep up the good work in the new year!

  14. Anonymous says:

    On the job training is one thing, but having to train people basic skills such as reading, writing, mathematics and speaking proper English should not be the responsibility of the private sector. Government run schools are one of the main culprit of Caymanian unemployment. Every year public schools are pumping out “graduates” that are unskilled for even entry level jobs because they lack basic skills.

    Show me a Caymanian that is properly educated and has the will to work and I will show you an employed Caymanian. The vast majority of unemployed Caymanians have been failed by their government run schools. Making it very difficult for the private sector to provide on the job training when basic skills are not present.

    • Anonymous says:

      2:16 Are you one of our excuse makers. Who gave you a chance to succeed? When government decides to reduce permits and stop issuing status and PR, then and only then will cheap labour slow and we will see a change in unemployment. Take a page from Turks and .Caicos. After five permits the employee has to leave the country and re-apply. Re-applying, does not guarantee the approval of another permit, and blocks PR
      We are followers and not leaders, so why can’t we change or laws likewise? No, our.no brain government, change or make laws in favour of permit holders, while sidelining the natives, then wonder what is causing unemployment. Reduce work permits and see employment decrease.
      Revenue will decrease but the dependency on the Childrenand Family Unit should offset the revenue reduction.

      • Anonymous says:

        I am not making excuses, rather I am pointing out one of the root causes of unemployment. Seems like people think reducing permits is the solution, but I think educating the Caymanians is the solution. That is all. Give a quality education to the locals and you will see a decline in unemployment.

        Don’t expect it to be an immediate solution, but it will be a long lasting solution

    • Anonymous says:

      Many were also failed by their overseas schools before they became Caymanian. Yes, our education system is in large part a disaster, but we should not ignore the fact that we are also importing a significant element of this problem.

      • Anonymous says:

        The Achilles heel of any aspiring MLA seeking election/reelection in 2017 on a platform of regressive vote buying, is the failure to recognize the material changes in composition, household solvency, and mindset of the current electorate. Pandering to the noisiest unemployable/rather not work 5.6% (per ESO Sept 2015) or the fringe anti-gay voters is as backward as it gets. If half the resident population are on permits, then the 5.6 figure is really only 2.8% of the resident population. Finish the schools you started 2 elections ago, reduce cost of living burden, automate antiquated government services to reduce costs, and foster a competitive atmosphere for business growth – where jobs will be added (as they should be) by private sector.

      • Anonymous says:

        More likely the people that were ignored by their home country’s education system are still in their home countries… unemployed as well

        • Anonymous says:

          Wrong. Despite laws designed to prevent it, many hundreds are here and have become Caymanians.

    • Nicole says:

      2/3rds of these foreigners on Cayman shores cant speak a lick of English!

      • Crock O'Shite says:

        Yes, perhaps. I bet you though that these people are doing the jobs that Caymanians believe are beneath them.

      • Anonymous says:

        Consider it is their 2nd (or 3rd) language that they speak and they still speak better than half the Caymanian kids out there. Who barely speak 1 language

      • SSM345 says:

        Speaking “Caymanian” is an incredibly poor use of the English language too.

    • Anonymous says:

      Much of what you say is true, but why do we have so many foreign illiterates working here? Surely you agree our own illiterates who are capable and willing to work should have priority?

  15. Trade Schools will help to save us says:

    Vocational schools/Trade schools will be the only solution to Cayman’s problem. 75% of the Work Permit Holders all went to Vocational/Trade Schools. We should stop turning up our noses at Trade Schools. Our people need it, that includes teaching us how to read a Tape Measure. You cannot take a man to lay or mix cement if he cannot calculate and have his basic mathematics covered. If you throw us out in the industry and we are not ready we will look like fools beside our expat tradesmen. You need to stop giving us false hope. Get us ready so that we can compete competitively. You cannot take a man to do carpentry or auto mechanics if he cannot calculate how to measure his cabinets or repair an Engine Block. You have one garage here teaching auto mechanics through the German School out of Jamaica and I congratulate them for that. But I still believe that we need to have our own trade school here. Trade School is the solution in every area for my people. We could do trades also in Landscaping a lot of money is into it. My Jamaican friend lives very well with a large Landscape crew in his business. Why do we have expats doing all the landscape jobs at the hotels and condos? Government, our people could do these jobs too if you will only train us properly in a Trade School or in such environment where we can learn to cut grass, bake bread, alter dresses, fix pipes, build houses, fix cars, fix house air conditioning, repair boats, install and build cabinets, fix appliances, do welding jobs. I am sure if Jim Bodden was alive and see what our island is now becoming, that our island is no longer the island of the 70’s and 80’s, and that he would have had trade schools in place for all of us, both old and young to save his people and our country. As it is now, we are starving and hurting and feel crippled. Should we just curl up and die?

    • Garfield says:

      Magnificently said Trade Schools will help to save us.

    • Anonymous says:

      I went to a trade school 35 years ago. I reached the 1 million US dollar mark last year. A good attitude is also needed which I didn’t have 100% all those years ago, but acquired over time.

    • I totally agree with this writers comments and must add that I have been saying this for years but maybe not in such a nice way.Look at the number of people who come here to work as skilled laborers and how many manage to stay here and take on other jobs or even end up starting up their own business.This has had a huge impact on locals and its high time that a fully organized proper vocational school be set up and many retired Caymanians would be more than glad to help train our future plumbers,electricians masons and carpenters.The money they can earn is far more than one can get in other basic jobs and I am sure that many young Caymanians would take this up if it were available and this would cut back on the need to import so many foreign workers.
      There is also another underlying problem with so many Caymanians out of work and that was the granting of so many statuses(I think 3000 was the number) which over time has blossomed into many more “family”members also being granted status by right? and I have yet to see any mention made of this happening on here or anywhere else for that matter.If the truth be known this has had in my opinion a huge impact on the unemployment problems in this country.Happy new year to all and lets hope that 2016 will be a better year for ALL concerned.

    • Anonymous says:

      We had a trade school for nearly a hundred years and it was called “going to sea, where we created a reputation of having the finest mariners in the world. Going to sea is what built Cayman and we created a skilled and disciplined workforce which extended to those at home.
      Unfortunately, no government has totally replaced the skills gained by “going to sea” with anything substantially equivalent.

  16. Sharkey says:

    This issue with the unemployment of caymanian has really touched me . When I write a comment and say that the min wage be $8. 00 for Caymanians, and I see someone come back and say that $ 6. 00 min would make an enormous difference, makes think that is desperation , and we wonder why people steal is all because of desperation . And the government is making too much money on work permits . It really show that government /politicians don’t care about the citizens of the Islands. I think that the politicians are treating the people like peasants in a rich country.

  17. Sharkey says:

    Mr Premier, this is discrimination when you allow other people from other countries to be hired , rather than from your own country .

    • Anonymous says:

      Discrimination on the basis of talent, discrimination on the basis of qualifications, discrimination on the basis of profitability, discrimination on the basis of work ethic, discrimination on the basis of not taking crack, . . .

    • Anonymous says:

      And Government hired a “foreigner” for the job at the Fire Station. There were quite a few Caymanians that could have been placed in that job

      • Anonymous says:

        Yes, there are Caymanians that could have been; but are there any that should have been? That is the important distinction in this debate.

  18. Tellme says:

    Can some explain the sweet spot That Marco Archer said the economy is in?
    How can it be with unemployment so high?

    • Gray Matter says:

      The sweet spot is that they all get a check at the end of the month for doing nothing (Ministers , Backbenchers); just look at Joey’s Facebook page, traveling all over and fine dining and expensive wine , cooking in his $1,500 green egg and throwing it in the faces of the struggling and unemployed. THATS THE SWEET SPOT.

  19. Sharkey says:

    Mr Premier why did it take the 1,000 unemployed caymanian show up for Christmas clean up , for you to realize the high number of unemployed caymanian ? When you have all Government information to your disposal, but yet you know that work permits grew 5,000 sense you took office. I think it is like you said in the last paragraph BRUSHING OFF Mr Suckoo resignation , and all so your voters with this kind of BS. Raise the min. Wage for Caymanians to $8.00 per hour. and $10.00 per hour min. For work permit holders .

  20. Anonymous says:

    I feel sorry for Alden. He is intelligent and he is a lawyer so he knows all this Tony Eden Holy Bible Evidence stuff is just utter nonsense in today’s world and Al Suckoo’s “christian values’ stuff is just trying to ensure the elderly voters’ Old Testament vote next time around. Like other intelligent MLAs (including McKeeva) , Alden knows from close to home experience that Eden’s nasty, twisted, ignorant anti gay attacks are both unfair and also unsustainable in Cayman’s long run.

  21. An immediate moratorium on further issuance of work permits for the various sectors for which the NWDA and Immigration Dept.has data identifying available and suitable qualified Caymanians.

    Consider that we will have 760 school leavers graduating in June/16 plus about 25 qualified/ mature returning Caymanians currently in overseas tertiary centers.

    A SIX MONTH moratorium on new work permits and a STRICT system of “on the job understudy” to ensure a smooth transition when the work permit matures is THE ONLY SOLUTION to this crisis!

    I saw a job advert in one of our daily papers seeking a med level staff but needing to (1) Speak the foreign language of the financial institution placing the advert and (2) have to know ALL THE BANKING LAWS of the home country placing the advert.

    Sheer madness! Work permits far too easy to get in Cayman Islands.

    Does not work this way (“this easy”!) in ANY OTHER COUNTRY!!

    • Anonymous says:

      Heaven forbid that the parent company of a class B bank would want an employee who could talk to staff and clients and would not expose the parent group to legal and regulatory risk.

      • George Ebanks says:

        Is this meant to be a riddle or a reply to my post??..@2:50am?…did you pass the Immigration English test?

        • Anonymous says:

          That response shows both how little you know about the subject and the inadequacy of your own education.

          • If only you had a humanistic name I could better appreciate from whence you cometh!

            • Anonymous says:

              Nice to see how quickly you defaulted to the inane “I’ve used my name, why have you not used yours” response. If only you knew what “humanistic” meant and why it was not the correct word to use in your response . . . As has been noted on CNS recently only the end of the road losers seem to use their real names, everyone else has something to lose by identifying themselves.

            • Anonymous says:

              Off the top of my head I can only think of Petrarch or Cicero as humanistic names. Would one of those do?

            • Anonymous says:

              I changed my name to hide from ex-wives, other creditors and law enforcement agencies. Do you want my old name or my current one?

        • Anonymous says:

          Says the man who posted below “THIS IS WE COUNTRY” (capitialisation is OP’s own ghastly affectation). There was nothing wrong with the style or content of the post to which you were responding. That you had trouble understanding it speaks volumes about your ignorance as to how the Cayman economy works. Maybe I should post in using pictures and crayons for you next time. I still doubt you would understand with your caveman politics.

        • Anonymous says:

          Could you?

      • Anonymous says:

        Yep, 6 month moratorium I say knock yourself out.

        If this is organized right, publish the date in advance and all of us expats can all clear off for some extended leave.

        If you don’t have 100 per cent employment within six weeks then we all come back.

    • Anonymous says:

      The requirement for an understudy exists in the Law. If immigration enforced the law we would not have this problem. But this is Cayman, and we do not enforce our laws. We sure as hell suffer the consequences of that though.

      • George Ebanks says:

        Must be enforced in 2016. Even retroactively if needs be!!
        Its very easy to right a wrong!
        Some permits have gotta go!!

        • Anonymous says:

          Who Is going to enforce it George? Since the Governor stopped being responsible for immigration enforcement has been a disaster.

    • Anonymous says:

      Get over yourself George. If you don’t get that Cayman is completely different than the U.S. or UK you should not be commenting. Every government that has tried to restrict numbers ended up with budget shortfall. The answer is education and good parenting. And go have a good look at Guernsey, Singapore and similar.

      • George Ebanks says:

        @ 10:57am. The only comparison that is of relevance here is that THIS IS WE COUNTRY and WE have 2500 of our people unemployed.
        And if you don’t like that…then I know the solution for your salvation.

        • Anonymous says:

          Where are you getting 2,500 from? The most recent Labour Force Survey said 1,575.

          If you’re going to rant, at least get your facts right.

          • George Ebanks says:

            Actually if you include the under-employed along with unemployed; the number is closer to 2,700!
            I think 22,000 work permits must be cut lower. Correction needed..

      • George Ebanks says:

        @10:57am. I posted your reply somewhere on here. If you don’t find it taking a flight outbound might lead you to the correct answer.
        See ya!

        • Anonymous says:

          I will go when I am ready, not when you tell me.

        • Anonymous says:

          The descent to the petty racism of “flights leaving daily” is complete in three moves.

          • Anonymous says:

            It is Ebanks’s Law in action. F = kSA, where F is the speed with which one posts about flights leaving daily, S is the stupidity of the poster, A is the anger of the post and k is the Caymankind Constant.

    • Anonymous says:

      Just give us time to relocate all our businesses elsewhere before the law comes into force please. Then you can cancel all the work permits for all I care.

      • Anonymous says:

        wow! you mean you will really leave? man that would be the best thing happen to Cayman. lets get this little Island back to where we were in the 80s and and mid 90s before your type came on here, we were all here working and living in harmony…with expats alike.

        Today, people like you have no respect for Caymanians, you want to push the natives out of their opportunities,you are going to cause one of the biggest upheaval in these little Islands of ours.
        You cry foul and fool the Government that your type will leave because you cant get your own way, but you not fooling the natives, we wish your kind would leave!

      • WaYaSay says:

        Please stop being a lazy ass and get on with relocating your business somewhere else………….it is not that difficult and should not take you so long lazyass.

        With an attitude like yours towards Cayman, the Country and people who are hosting you and your success, we will all be better off without YOU in our midst. I have some experience in international business relocation and will be happy to assist you pro bono.

        According to the Hon. Premier, we have some $64 million surplus forecast this year so we can do just fine without the few dollars you pay in work permit fees for your friends……….Chances are that any business or work permit fees you pay are cancelled out by your remittance back home for your baby mammas, to support your illegitimate children, anyway!

        Sick of ungrateful, selfish, hater people like you in our midst for 2016. Those that appreciate Cayman and Caymanians, the way you found us, are welcomed to stay and enjoy your success.

        • Fred the Piemaker says:

          “Chances are that any business or work permit fees you pay are cancelled out by your remittance back home for your baby mammas, to support your illegitimate children, anyway!”

          Don’t recall there being any information on the poster’s marital or family status, what they does with their income, or indeed anything other than the fact that they were unlikely to be Caymanian given the threat to relocate if the employment regime were changed. Certainly nothing to justify the above. Some definitions for you :

          bigotry – intolerance towards those who hold different opinions from oneself,

          prejudice – preconceived judgment or opinion, an adverse opinion or leaning formed without just grounds or before sufficient knowledge, an instance of such judgment or opinion, an irrational attitude of hostility directed against an individual, a group, a race, or their supposed characteristics.

          Helpful CliffNotes for you – if you find yourself ascribed negative characteristics to an individual or group based on their membership of a group, race, nationality etc, rather than direct knowledge, chances are your are being bigoted, prejudiced and possibly racists.

      • WaYaSay says:

        Alden McNee McLaughlin Jr., MBE;
        A Happy New Year to you sir.

        I trust that by now you have had an opportunity to contemplate your words published above by CNS and the many comments posted in response.

        I am not sure if the irony of your own words has sunk in yet but please allow me to reflect on some of what you said………… “Unemployment is the Achilles heel of the PPM”…..DUH!

        The solution is not as hidden, as you appear to think, and, it does not have to be “create more job opportunities” as we know from the last 3 years that this only means “issue more work permits”……….. Around 5, 000 INCREASE over that same time period. With unemployment stagnant at around 2,400, notwithstanding that there are already 22,000 WORK PERMIT jobs already existing here…….45,000 jobs available locally, total.
        There is nothing wrong with creating jobs and expanding the economy……..however do so after you have fixed the unemployment problem on hand.

        There is no category of work in the Cayman Islands that is only open to “Caymanians” exclusively, therefore, it follows that work permits are issued to ALL strata and categories of jobs on the market within these Islands.
        It therefore stands to reason that,for every unemployed Cayman, in whatever category they qualify, be it garbage collector, gardener, handyman, caregiver, service provider, technician, supervisor, assistant manager or manager, there is at least one work permit in force.


        According to you, there is a $64million SURPLUS forecast this year. According to CNS there is $89million forecast revenue from work permits………..do the math…….you only need $25million from work permits to balance your budget………your solution is staring you in the face.

        I am not suggesting that you cut the number of work permits by 71% and forget about a surplus altogether. I am strongly suggesting that you reduce them by 10%, until all qualified, unemployed Caymanians are hired. This small reduction will “create” 2,200 jobs (10% of 22,000) for Caymanians and the remaining 90% (19,800) can happily stay on their permits.

        You and the PPM could still, rightfully, boast of $57million surplus this year, but, more importantly, ensure your reelection in 2017…………Nothing less is going to work for the PPM…………the voters will not fall for the BS and promises next time, they want to see real action, not just lip service or stating the obvious.

        From reading postings on CNS, another 10%, who hate Cayman and Caymanians, will pack up and leave because they see you are serious about unemployment and they cannot call the shots; however, it should take little effort from the PPM to replace that 10% and their “jobs” with legitimate investors who really care about the country that they are investing in.
        You already created 5,000 jobs in 3 years that went to work permit holders!
        I say good riddance to those who do not really want to be here anyway and despise Caymanians.

        If you talk to the Hon. Marco Archer, he will tell you that the reduction in the surplus, from work permit fees, will not be as great as the $8.9million I forecast, simply because the 10% of jobs that will go to the unemployed, will by and large, be at the bottom end of the work permit fee scale and not at the top managers field that attract the higher fees.
        Add to this the fact that 2,200 working Caymanians, who will spend ALL of their income into the economy, is worth far more than the income derived from the sale of 2,200 work permits. Add to this that 2,200 fewer workers are exporting 75% of their salaries back home every week, worth tens of millions of dollars. Exported salaries do not buy goods locally that attract import duties to the Government.
        Add to this the HUGE $millions reduction in payouts through Social Services to the unemployed and the net reduction in surplus will be less that 2% of the annual budget.

        The real irony is that if you do not do something, you and several others in the PPM, will add to the unemployment figures, immediately following the 2017 elections.

      • Nicole says:

        Yes your law breaking racist overpriced butt will surely be missed. not really tho!

        • Diogenes says:

          Saying the poster is a racist is incorrect, since there is no mention of race in the post (being Caymanian is not a race). Equally, I see no basis for your assumption that he is either overpriced, or a lawbreaker. The latter is in any event illogical, since if he was a lawbreaker, why would he leave once they changed a law? Surely the essence of lawbreaking is that you ignore laws?

    • Anonymous says:

      I say try it and see how it works out

  22. George Orwell Ebanks-Bodden says:

    Alden and PPM are completely out of touch. They focus on special interest groups and merchant class interests while ignoring the majority of Caymanians. Alden, Moses, Marco, Ossie and Wayne display an arrogance and superiority complex where they look down on regular people. What have they done to help make life better for the average Caymanian? They are selling out the country and will cripple it with serious debts just like they did last time. This government is no better than the last UDP. Ask yourself if life has improved since they took office in 2013. Unemployment increases, education is a mess, foreclosures increased costs of living is higher and Caymanians are made to feel like second class persons in our country. PPM have the power to fix it but do nothing. Instead they roll over for the UK like dogs to aid the PPM agenda not the Caymanian people. They are more concerned about LGBT rights than protecting Caymanians and helping our people keep their dignity.

  23. Anonymous says:

    Maybe they should have started by hiring a Caymanian to head up the NWDA. Then give the NWDA some real powers instead of this fake agency that truly does very little but try to compete with private sector by offering classes.

  24. Anonymous says:

    No, many people are not unemployed by choice but rather due to the government’s reliance on work permit revenue. Those who can but will not hold a job need to stop getting financial assistance like all those women with baby daddy’s who need to pay child support. Stop enabling them Govt! Alden is in Lala land and won’t do anything to help the situation! Useless just useless! This Se people who again voted for PPM should be ashamed of themselves because PPM elites definitely know how to spend money, but they sure don’t know how to make it!

    • Anonymous says:

      How about enforcement of that child support without the requirement of going to court? The woman usually works and the dead beat father shows up in court wasting time with no job. Yet again. The dead beat obviously has money from somewhere. Teach responsibility by enforcing it. The children and next generation are the ones that suffer.

  25. Anonymous says:

    Caymanian unemployment is a myth.

  26. As they say in golf “Par for the course”no one wants to upset the Status quo herein lies part if not all of the problem.Happy new year to one and all and please everyone drive safely especially late tonite early am and PLEASE use the free bus service to get home safely.P/up your cars tomorrow when u sober up.

  27. Anonymous says:

    The long lines of people waiting to sign up for the cleanup crews prior to Christmas is a good indication that people want to work. The problems are that they refuse to work 8 hours a day doing backbreaking work that the Immigration Board’s allow imported labour to do for pennies an hour AND a lot of unemployed Caymanians are not necessarily good at dealing with customers and they can’t be trusted dealing with money. Not many entry level jobs for those kinds of people. We need some form of light manufacturing for these people.

    • Anonymous says:

      A good indication that they want money handed to them for very little in return or anything too mentally taxing.

  28. Anonymous says:

    the usual waffle from cig….. blaming the private sector is laughable and goes to prove that the ppm are totally clueless.

  29. Anonymous says:

    as usual….the real issues behind the unemployment myth are ignored….
    the vast majority of the so called unemployed..are unemployed by choice. end of story.

    • Uncle John says:

      Sick of hearing the bull shit about Caymanians or unemployed by choice,it government was not depending on the fund from work permit revenue you same one and many more would see very Caymanians that want work would be working, but all you guys come here and start preaching the same song over and over that we don’t want to work so you employers can bring in your own people but if it doesn’t stop cayman will turn just like the other Caribbean island with nothing but robberies and murders and violence and every house have on grilles, is that what we want?? I’m saying no no no , so let’s give the people a job.

    • Anonymous says:

      I can tell you, you don’t know what you are talking about, maybe overall, yes, but you cant throw us all in a basket and say we don’t want to work.
      Again, there are approximately 40 sub-builder and contractors cant find work, not registered ..cause it makes no sense…no one listens.

      Would you say this is the same reason? We want to work, but no one wants to hire Caymanians . Too many building licenses were sold out to cheap, unqualified cowboys …paper Caymanian…and fronting permit holders.

      Alden is very much aware of this situation. he has to reform the immigration laws first thing, you cant remove the sting and leave the scorpion.

    • Anonymous says:

      31/12, 3:03 pm — I don’t have the answers but I do not think it is as simple as you put it — that most are unemployed by choice. But what is undeniable is that we have a heck of a lot of incompetent expatriates holding jobs based on false self-promotion. I come across them quite frequently and I can’t for the life of me figure out why a Caymanian could not get that job. There are some real screw ups out there who proclaim their experience but there is just no evidence of that, not to mention plain old common sense. There is also evidence of serious lack of proper attention to their jobs. But they continue to get away with it. I am just constantly astonished by it.

    • Anonymous says:

      The ones who came down my yard did nothing, zero, zilch except smoke and look at their phones. And the ones who sat in the shade all day at the road leading to the Agriculture Grounds, with a ‘supervisor’ didn’t have enough sense to even pretend to work for us motorists driving by. No wonder the PPM originally didn’t want to to touch this until Ozzie “Effin Driftwood” got into it as a vote getter and startled his PPM people who had previously said it was just a Mckeeva vote getter.

  30. Anonymous says:

    What’s confusing about this ‘unemployment’ issue is that there are so many on-going construction projects on GC that should be absorbing the employed but aren’t. It seems that any construction company taking on a government-approved major project can get as many WPs as they want to bring people in to do the work.

    I bet it will be the same when the cruise dock and the Beach Bay resort are built – it’ll be cheaper to import temporary ex-pat labour than take on locals so immigration will just rubber stamp all the WP applications and to heck with unemployment.

    • Garfield says:

      A vocational / building trades school should be set up on the island for Caymanians. With a building trade Caymanians would then be able to take up the majority of construction jobs on island from Jamaicans, Phillipinos and Hondurans. Too many Caymanians go to university when they should be going to a trade school for the construction industry as a good portion do not have the academic attitudes required for university.

      • Anonymous says:

        Fair point but the majority of jobs on most construction sites here are filled by unskilled or semi-skilled labour. If you start vocational training it won’t make much difference.

        The problem with the current education program is that it generates too many Caymanians with almost worthless qualifications and high expectations. In fact I’m not sure how many of the graduates coming through the system ever got their degrees because at the end of it they still can’t write acceptable English. What do you do when an applicant with an MBA expects to take on a management post even though they can’t write an acceptable CV?

        The civil service solved this long ago by simply taking on applicants regardless of their abilities. You ended up with an insane situation where ex-pats with years of experience and solid qualifications are taking orders from Caymanians who’d be struggling to graduate high school in the USA – look at what happened there and ask yourself if the private sector would tolerate it.

    • Anonymous says:

      The cruise ship dock will never be built.

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