Airport overseas recruitment stirs trouble

| 20/02/2019 | 93 Comments
Cayman News Service

ATC trainees tour the control room at ORIA

(CNS): An overseas recruitment drive for air traffic controllers by the Cayman Islands Airports Authority is stirring up controversy as the current increase in air traffic does not appear to justify the move, according to the airport’s own most recent statistics. The authority is seeking to double the headcount with overseas controllers, which has been criticised by the opposition leader. But the airport has hit back, claiming it needs new staff to meet regulatory changes and that it has shown a long commitment to train local people, currently having just one work permit holder among a staff of 196.

The CIAA said it had been involved in regular recruitment of Caymanians for several years and already has staff in training overseas. The authority also went through a local recruitment drive last year and ended up with four out of 20 local applicants qualifying and commencing training at the start of this month.

Another four candidates are at an advanced stage of the selection process in Cayman Brac and another 14 local applicants to be air traffic control officer (ATCO) trainees are currently being vetted for Owen Roberts International Airport, the CIAA said.

But the release stated that there is still a shortage of qualified and competent Caymanian air traffic controllers, as is the case around the world, so it has turned to overseas candidates to plug short-term gaps.

Airport officials argued that the need to double the headcount is due to the separation of the duties “of Aerodrome and Approach control service, as per industry standards, enabling the facility to operate with a higher degree of safety and efficiency”.

However, Opposition Leader Ezzard Miller said that air traffic volume grew by only 3.4% in 2017. The figures for 2018 are not yet available but he said there is no indication that there has been any sudden surge in the amount of aircraft movement at local airports.

In a release Monday, Miller called for an immediate local recruitment and training exercise, as he expressed “deep concern” that so many overseas air traffic controllers are being recruited.

“The large disparity in ratio of aircraft movements and staffing numbers makes the recruitment of such a large number of new air traffic controllers highly suspect,” Miller said. “On the face of it, this just doesn’t seem justifiable, especially as it is very likely to place these jobs ultimately out of reach of Caymanians.”

He accused the airport of “dangling carrots” with generous benefits packages and said he was “troubled” by the recruitment campaign.

“The usual pattern is that overseas recruits, especially for government posts, take root and eventually become absorbed on a permanent basis. This will ultimately block opportunities for Caymanians,” he warned.

Miller urged the airport to replace the two-year contracts with temporary arrangements, alongside a local recruitment drive and a plan for on-the-job training for local recruits. He said Caymanian ATCO recruits could be brought to full professional standing within a year with the usual arrangement for them to attend a nine-month programme offered in Trinidad and Tobago.

Miller noted that overseas candidates would need to be initiated into local laws, policies, procedures and operations in order to ensure maintenance of optimal aviation safety standards.

“It is ironic and totally unacceptable that rather than training our own people we are seeking to invest in the initiation and further training of an influx of new controllers,” he said. “It never fails to astonish me how short-sighted we continue to be, to our people’s detriment.”

But the airport disputed the claims by the opposition leader and the time for training. The number of controllers at an airport is not arbitrary but based on a regulatory formula, the CIAA said, pointing out that it was neither “advantageous nor prudent to pay for contracted services”.

The authority said that while it has already undertaken local drives and was continuing to train new recruits, it has an immediate need for more officers and is recruiting people on contracts and will not have any long-term commitments with them.

“The best case planning scenario for the qualification and validation of an ATCO is 24 months, with the average being 28 months over the past five years,” the airport said, as it justified the recruitment of foreign workers in the short term.

In addition to this recruitment, the training and recruitment of local controllers would continue, according to the CIAA.

“The offer of a two-year contract is based on the expectation that after two years local candidates will be at an advanced stage of qualification and will subsequently be able to fulfill the obligations of the post,” the CIAA stated.

See the full press releases and the regulation excerpt in the CNS Library

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Comments (93)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    I feel some shame for actually saying this, but having observed close up the work ethic of many Caymanians and their work ethic/professionalism, I would feel safer having just about any other nationality directing my plaine safely into dock. Harsh comment, but is born out of experience.

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  2. Anonymous says:

    Anonymous 2:01:”The CAL B737 landed on a dry, calm runway in clear conditions” ?? !! You are totally wrong!! That night there was a fierce down pour which started long before the flight arrived and continued until after the accident. Also, a portion of the runway was closed due to repairs, so the threshold was displaced. How do I know? I was a CAA employee who attended the scene immediately after the accident on the Friday night and stayed at the airport until Sunday as part of the initial investigative team.

    You’re partially correct that the aircraft had landed with one thrust reverses disabled, a act which was perfectly legal, based on the aircraft’s MEL. The crew was perfectly aware of this action as they had left Provodenciales in that condition on the originating leg of that flight (via Miami). However, NO-ONE on board “just pulled the breakers” (sic)!!

    Next time you comment you might wish to present FACTS, not your comic-book, fake news version!!

  3. Anonymous says:

    “Many years ago ,two (controllers) were recruited” from overseas. That is true, however that was in the mid-1970’s. That was a different Cayman! Both controllers were replaced by Caymanian controllers by late 1977. BTW, the “Indian” was a Kenyan national of Indian heritage.

    On many occasions during the 1980’s and 1990’s the CAA (which ran the airport at the time) contracted ATC trainers and Supervisors from overseas, who again were replaced by Caymanians.

    If the intent is to recruit ATCOs from overseas on short-term contracts, there should be nothing wrong with that but Ezzard does have a point if such recruitment is long-term or open-ended.

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  4. Anonymous says:

    Another storm in a teacup spurred on by idle politicians who know nothing about anything except to stir up crap in the so called interest of nationalism.

    This is not the first time that Air Traffic Controllers had to be recruited from overseas. Many years ago two were recruited for the same reasons as at present. One was from Sweden and the other from India. When their terms had ended they simply went back home. Neither “took root” here.

    Ezzard, please deal with the real problems facing this Country and leave aeronautical professionals to sort out such matters. Certainly you have better things to do with your time than getting involved in the recruitment of air traffic controllers.

    Above all, KEEP POLITICS OUT OF IT!

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    • Anonymous says:

      9;40. Thank you. Politicians need to stay out of public service staffing matters. Look at what Bernie has done to Education and Fire -disaster.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Look at how long it takes to get a successful applicant in place; this could all be as simple as CIAA anticipating the new airport will spur more growth in visitors and flights.

    I’d certainly like them to err on the side of too many trainees, rather than too little.

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    • Anonymous says:

      6:13 am: So the CIAA should say so — you make a supposition — where in the story above do they say that?

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      • Anonymous says:

        Clearly you are not a business owner or HR manager in the Cayman Islands. For skilled permit labour, it regularly takes 6-8mos to just to place ads, interview candidates (both domestic and foreign), recruit, apply for permit, get a thumbs up or down, then coordinate moving costs and shipping of personal effects, housing, vehicle, insurance, etc. Sometimes more like a year. Even after all of that, some “new” hires decide to leave, or get poached by a competitor. Businesses often struggle in the interim.

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    • Anonymous says:

      So they have sudden indicators? What sudden indicators?

    • Observer says:

      I remember a young Caymanian in the 1970s who came back with home teaching qualifications plus — she very nearly did not get a job (possibly not connected to the in-families) were it not for some intervention by some other educators who put in a good word. Had they not done so countless Caymanian children would have missed the priceless experienced they had with this remarkably dedicated teacher.

      The other day I was chanced to speak to an education chief about caymanisation of the teaching force. The response: that is all well and good but we have to make sure they are up to snuff.

      So incoming qualified Caymanian teachers have to somehow prove themselves even before they step in the door — if they are let in the door — but we have no similar qualms of recruiting overseas teacher that we don’t know from Adam.

      As a friend of mine used to say, “I have my BA” (Been Away).

      So no one is going to tell me that there are not underling prejudices operating all the time in selecting people for the workforce.

      All across the Caribbean — this is our cross to bear, our legacy from colonialism that is still here in the Cayman Islands unconsciously absorbed by all of us, Caymanians and expats alike, in our reactions and decision making.

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      • anonymous says:

        8.25am So you agree with hiring Caymanians to this key position on which the safety of the flying public depends, based solely on their personality, having failed the internationally accredited aptitude test.Read today’s Compass.

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        • Observer says:

          Where did I say that?

          I never said anything about personality — I was speaking about academically qualified Caymanians — no one wants anyone to hire anyone, regardless of nationality, if they are not qualified.

      • Anonymous says:

        Our Caymanian-centric education system encourages inadequately prepared adolescent students to “graduate” high school with a D-G average grade in 3 subjects with less than 12 disciplinary suspension days. There’s little thought, prep, or ambition to attend college, and they all assume they’ll be “chanced” to be hired as mid-level executives at 17.

        Teen pregnancy has also forced life-changing compromises. CIMA continues to actively campaign to block sex eduction (including tampon use), and family planning in 2019 using theological moral code from the 17th Century. Teen pregnancies have dropped from >11% in 1995, to around 6% now, probably because of the internet. Still well above first world WHO/UN averages. These are home-grown limitations which are the product of regrettable Caymanian-made decisions – including clinging to extreme right wing theology preaching a flawed and vengeful morality code from 1634 that bears no resemblance to contemporary Christian thinking.

        It’s self-limiting.

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    • Observer says:

      It goes without saying that everyone wants the local staff to be as highly trained as the overseas staff. Nationality is not a qualification. But if anyone is trying to imply that Caymanians cannot rise to the challenge if given the opportunity for proper training and initiation h or she is just plain stupid.

      That aside, let us look at the recent increases in air traffic movements:
      2018—26,408, an increase of 772, or a 3%
      2017—25,636, an increase of 841, or 3.4%
      2016—24,795, an increase of 373, or 1.53%
      2015–24,422, a DECREASE of 146, or a decrease of 2.9%
      2014—25,146

      As you see, the trend shows insignificant increases (and decreases) from year to year. In fact, 2018 showed a decline in % increase on the 2017 % increase.

      If the CIAA is doubling its staff for what it anticipates in 2019, which is not being corroborated by anecdotal evidence, then a 100% increase in staff should be backed up by at least a 75% increase in air traffic movements, and that would be a generous assessment.

      A 75% in increase in air traffic movements is approaching 50,000. If that is what they are expecting, then they better tell the government and the public as I imagine that that will impact taxi service, concessions stands, immigration and customs, hotels, etc.

      Right now, CAL had already reduced its daily flights to Miami from three to two, from November, peak tourist season. (Note social media is all excited about the advertises reduced air fare to Miami via CAL).

      To the issue of a directive from the Civil Aviation Authority to increase staff, no such directive has been given to increase staff – either now or in the recent past, by the Civil Aviation Authority.

      The facts are that the CICAA separated their aerodrome and approach staff on a trial basis in May 2015, and it was fully implemented on September 3, 2015. So this is NOT new in any way.

      And by the way, I hope the editor of the Compass sees this, as I am afraid he or she is flying blind, as well.

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  6. Anonymous says:

    Here’s an idea. Make the Brac a visual approach airport and shutter the tower.
    Only about 3% of USA airports have towers. yet we have 67% and many of the tower less airports are much busier than the Brac and serve a larger population.
    We can then relocate the ATC guys from the Brac.

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    • Anonymous says:

      This is actually a BRILLIANT idea 20/2 9:13pm.
      I mean I think they were/are hoping for bigger/better but until Dart starts buying up the Brac… Lets shutter down for now and relocate those peeps.

      Oh, snap! Now you don’t know whether to upvote or downvote… LOL

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  7. Anonymous says:

    hire the best people for the job, irrespective of nationality.end of story.

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  8. Anonymous says:

    Well, y’all, thank God we have an Ezzard Miller to stir up “trouble.”

    Where is the policy change to make it necessary to double up on air traffic controllers? Where is the dramatic leap in air traffic movements?

    It is not there. So how can we justify 100% increase in staffing?

    Where is the ministry responsible to look into these outrageous decisions?

    And glad to know y’all have a lot of Caymanians in training and being recruited — there is your answer — a phased introduction of local staff and get y’all some overseas on-the-job trainers to allow them to get necessary experience.

    Bam! Done!

    If up to now over the last three/four years and more y’all managed not to violate any safety standards — what is the sudden change? Spell it out, as I did not see the justification represented in CNS report of the CICAA press release.

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    • Anonymous says:

      This is the reason politicians has no say in the hiring of public servants. Thank goodness we have leaders who stand up and refuse to be pressured into making stupid HR decisions.

      Remember Bernie worked near the tower which was scary enough. He also tried changing oil and making bread. Both businesses are closed now. But he wants to run our islands. Scary stuff.

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    • Anonymous says:

      The drastic increase of 100% in staff, raising numbers from 9 to 18, is said to be necessary because:

      1. increases in air travel movements: Go to their website and check — no increase warranting 100% increase in staffing.

      2. Change in regulatory requirements splitting staff into Aerodrome and approach control service: that separation has been in place since 2015, as a recommendation and not a directive.

      Nevertheless, if that separation was demonstrating a need for increased staffing, it could have been done in a phased programme over the nearly four years, giving the CICAA time to train up new Caymanian air traffic controllers.

      That could have included:
      1. Initial training of new Cayman recruits
      2. Recruiting on the job trainers to strengthen supervision.
      3. Sending of those with initial training for advanced courses.

      No. We much prefer solving the problem identified nearly four years ago with massive investment in overseas recruitment. orientation and even their further development.

      By the way, if the reports by the CICAA that they have been so engaged with Caymanian recruits holds any water at all, the question must remain — why such a neede for this sudden huge overseas recruitment?

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    • Anonymous says:

      Don’t forget that our print media are my mostly comprised of non-Caymanians and we know the typical attitudes towards the “natives.”

      That allegiance comes out in how they treat stories like these.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Has Miller ever suggested a solution to anything? He continually grandstands for his own political gain without demonstrating an understanding of issues . Does he know anything about regulations for the number of controllers required? Does he know if they currently have enough staff or have been short for years? Does he comprehend what has been done to recruit Caymanians? Stir the pot, offer nothing constructive and look for the next publicity opportunity. Well done Ezzard!

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  9. Anonymous says:

    Weren’t Duran Duran fantastic ?

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    • Anonymous says:

      One would not know they performed or that there was an amazing music event from this site. It appears only anti-Dart news is permitted. “West Bay woman moans on social media” merits a story but “Huge music festival of world famous bands goes well” does not get a mention.

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    • Anonymous says:

      I see your Duran Duran and raise you a Gay marriage.

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  10. Anonymous says:

    Ezzard, ORIA has two very simple options. The first is to provide ATCs with the required training, experience and certification to meet international standards for air transportation. The second is too ignore the rules, try to fudge it and get the airport flagged as ‘unsafe’ so effectively closing it down. It’s already a pretty interesting place to fly into (BA pilots call it a ‘carrier landing’) so why are you trying to make things more difficult for us?

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    • Anonymous says:

      So is the CIAAA now operating at unsafe levels? How long has that been going on so that we now have this emergency?

      When did they find this out that suddenly makes it necessary to recruit nine new air traffic controllers?

      And did the Civil Aviation Authority that inspects the CICAA every year not realize this before?

      Or did the Civil Aviation Authority order this recruitment at all? Anyone ask Ritchie Smith, Director of the Civil Aviation Authority?

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    • Anonymous says:

      2:43 pm: so when did the CICAA realize theuvwerr at risk of being “flagged as unsafe”?

      Suddenly they have to double their staff numbers?

      Sounds like an emergency. Why?

  11. Anonymous says:

    Here you go again Ezzard.

    A man who can’t pronounce runway properly now trying to expound on the recruitment of air traffic controllers. A man who has the unique distinction of being one of only two persons to curl a propeller at ORIA now becoming an aviation expert.

    Stick with what you know Nuff said!

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    • Anonymous says:

      Ezzard is much the same as many of the other politicians , ultimately , they just like to hear themselves speak . One has just to listen to the radio broadcast on the LA meetings & discussions. There is nothing wrong with this by the way , car radio does have other stations to listen to.

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      • Anonymous says:

        The airport now has nine air traffic controllers and two supervisors, so if they are “seeking to double the headcount with overseas controllers,” as your story claims (see first para) that means that they are seeking to hire at least nine overseas controllers? Wow! That is amazing — no anticipation?

        If the claim is that the Civil Authority is requiring that the staff be split in two, and so that is the reason so many area needed, let me inform you — the two aspects of their work was split in 2015 and it has not been mandated by the Civil Aviation Authority — although it is a good safety practice — but the point is the Airports Authority was not faced with a sudden directive by the Civil Aviation Authority.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Actually, 12:35 pm, Mr. Miller was on the Airport Authority Board for many years, so he knows a thing or two about operations and staffing requirements.

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      • Anonymous says:

        You don’t really believe that’s how boards are appointed here do you? Nobody could be that stupid.

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        • Anonymous says:

          2:17 pm: wrong interpretation— he learned a thing or two in the many, many years he served on the board. Adding, of course, to his prior knowledge.

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        • Anonymous says:

          2:17 pm: wrong interpretation. The poster meant that years of service on the board has equipped him with special staffing and operations insights and knowledge.

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        • Anonymous says:

          Exactly!! Thats like saying the people on the Central Planning Authority board are familiar with Planning Regulations and Building Codes. HA!!!!

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    • Anonymous says:

      According to your story: “The CIAA said it had been involved in regular recruitment of Caymanians for several years and already has staff in training overseas. The authority also went through a local recruitment drive last year and ended up with four out of 20 local applicants qualifying and commencing training at the start of this month.

      Another four candidates are at an advanced stage of the selection process in Cayman Brac and another 14 local applicants to be air traffic control officer (ATCO) trainees are currently being vetted for Owen Roberts International Airport, the CIAA said.”

      And they still need to recruit air traffic controllers in the near double digits? And even while there is still no concurrent increase in air traffic movements? Fancy that!

      Not the whole story!!!

      Further more, with all that training going on, why are we offering two-year contracts with an option to renew and additional training opportunities? (Not in the story but in the advertisement).

      Mr. Miller is right — employ a couple of overseas air traffic controllers, if they are necessary, but can’t see the case for it, but recruit some trainers to do the on-the-job training for all those Caymanians you say you have in various stages of training/recruitment.

      And recruit the overseas guys all on secondments so that you don’t get your staff packed with overseas workers to the detriment of incoming Caymanian recruits.

      This smacks of poor management and little commitment to the Caymanian recruits CICAA claims it is training.

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    • Anonymous says:

      So Ezzard’s report was that air traffic controllers are being increased by 50% but apparently the CICAA is saying they are increasing 100%.

      That means increasing from 9 to 18. Without any significant change in air traffic movements and no policy change?

      How you like them apples!

      What gives?

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    • Anonymous says:

      Another statutory Authority board that needs a thorough investigation

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  12. Anonymous says:

    One work permit holder amongst 196 staff, and still the same old vote-catching drivel about unemployed Caymanians.

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  13. Anonymous says:

    I don’t care what nationality you are from. ATC is one job just like airline pilot. You do not take lightly. I don’t think diversity hires are important here. Safety is.

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  14. anonymous says:

    I am still waiting to hear if the CIAA air traffic control has got radar facilities yet. If not, why not, and would this not impact on the number of air traffic controllers needed?.
    This will take total employees well over 200,and with the sky high salaries they receive (per the Auditor General’s report),it would be interesting to know what the total wage bill for the Authority is..

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  15. Anonymous says:

    Miller trying to micro-manage a highly technical operation that he knows nothing about. He should review the latest CAACI Audit findings before speaking. Thankfully we have CAACI oversight and governance structures in place that prevent Politicians from doing anything more than running their big mouths. The more Ezzard rants the more he reveals the fool he truly is.

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  16. Yurij Gagarin says:

    Not everyone can be a traffic controller. Certainly being Caymanian would give you no preference. You have to go through the process (see below).

    NATS (National Air Traffic Services in the UK) has three phases to the selection process.
    The first is a series of spatial awareness and mental agility tests, followed by a personality test to gauge how you react in a given situation.
    The second is a more complex version of phase one – more geared towards air traffic control.
    The third phase is a full-on interview – and a group exercise to see how you work as part of a team.

    If you are successful in the third phase, you are offered a place at the NATS training college. That’s where the hard work begins. Lots of presentations, briefings and simulator exercises.

    After college, you start your training at your destination airport. This takes quite a while. If you are in college for seven months – then it would take an additional 13 months to qualify at the airport tower.

    At the airport, you do an initial simulator training programme to get you up to speed. But the real on-the-job training is the guidance of your instructor.

    Your final assessment is exceedingly stressful… you can still fail.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Mentioning NATS training process has no bearing on the current issue because all ATC training is done regionally.

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      • anonymous says:

        2.05pm Wrong, we have to comply with UK ATC standards. Maybe that’s why we have so few locals who can pass the initial aptitude tes, despite the high slaries on offer.

        • Anonymous says:

          Again education is key and by the looks of it, proper spelling and grammar. There is no such thing as complying with a “UK” ATC standard. The UK itself complies with EU regulation on aviation and other things. The Cayman Islands does not. I’ll stop short now and see how smart you are to realise why your comment is utter garbage. Some of you are so uneducated on most things you come on CNS to make bold comments to trigger people to get information on topics most have no business commenting on. So yeah stick to that notion troll!

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          • anonymous says:

            11.50am I admit my typing is suspect, but then I do not use a spellchecker, but there is nothing wrong with my grammar.
            Unfortunately it is common but assuredly true, that Caymanians respond to criticism by hurling personal insults and in doing so you miss completely the irony and inaccuracy contained in your own comments.If you read the CIAA’s response to Mr Miller in today’s Compass it clearly states that we have to comply with the UK’s regulations which in turn comply with all international regulations.
            The subject in question is the safety of airline passengers and we all have the right to comment on that.

    • Anonymous says:

      Yes, 11:44 am, we want qualified people aboard, but there has been no change of any consequence in air traffic movements, the staff was divided since 2015, so no new policy demands, so why do we need double digit overseas air traffic controller recruitment?

      If the CICAA suddenly found it self in a state of undress, what demands were they not meeting in 2018? 2017? 2016? Tell us and we will try to understand.

      In the meantime, get your act together and find the bright young Caymanians who can do the job.

      You do say you have a full Caymanian staff — so why the sudden divergence?

      What exactly is going on?

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  17. Anonymous says:

    I don’t care where they are from, just hope they they are qualified and can keep the planes from dropping on my house or in the north sound. I believe the CIAA has a great track record in hiring Caymanians. Can Mr. Miller say how many qualified Caymanian ATC persons are sitting home unable to get hired? Is he satisfied with anything, ever.? I heard someone lamenting about the other members of the opposition not on the radio/tv, heck they probably can’t get an opportunity! There is much to criticize this government about but I do not believe criticism is warranted here. He should tell them that they should train as many Caymanians as are capable and available and after the two year contract has expired for the Americans put the trained up Caymanians in the positions.

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    • Anonymous says:

      10:59 you just don’t get it!

      After the 2 years the advertising for the same job will boldly require, in addition to what is required today, at least 2 years experience as an fully compliant ATC in the Cayman Islands.

      No on with that experience at home without a job? Get another 2 year contract.

      Over the years the Caymanian “trainee” will languish under the expat “ professional until he retires.

      The Caymanian will always have that carrot dangling there tho ………. you will get the job in 2 years when his contract runs out…..,

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  18. Anonymous says:

    1 permit holder out of 196 employees plus 14+4 new local recruits, yet Ezzard is still unhappy with CIAA’s safety call on hiring a few seasoned ATCs from overseas to train them up. Curious what the ATC novice error rate that Ezzard is willing to live with on inbound and outbound flights? My preference is zero with record 47 arrivals last Friday.

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  19. Anonymous says:

    CNS: in advance of your story on PTU mobile app, here is a link to their hard to find documents, including current rate sheet which should be very easy to digitize. Also note that PTU office seems to close at 4pm and not 5pm as they advertise!

    http://www.gov.ky/portal/page/portal/mtehome/publications

    CNS: Thank you!

    • Anonymous says:

      It seems Deloitte proposed the app in early 2018 and it once again fell on deaf ears. It’s not nearly as expensive to implement as the Compass article suggests. In fact, there are dozens of established taxi and transport app companies that would customize the backbone and supply the antennas and software for free. Rosa Harris really shouldn’t be in charge of this project or DoT. That Bermuda and Bahamas should be at least 2-3 years ahead of us in tourism tech underscores that point.

  20. Anonymous says:

    Sounds like the CIAA is in the right. You CANNOT train a new ATC worker in 9 months. Shortcuts like that, like all shortcuts people take here on the island, are irresponsible and dangerous!

    Reading this article, it felt like the instant Miller heard the words “overseas recruitment” he flipped his LOCAL ONLY switch and went into overdrive. ATC is highly regulated, controlled, and spealized. Training takes years if they make it through the whole way.

    Bravo to CIAA for standing their ground.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Ezzard looking for locals to work?? Check in front of The Barn. Plenty locals there looking work!

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    • Anonymous says:

      While the role is important in aviation, in the grand scheme of things, it is not the epicenter as many of those entitled souls would have people believe with today’s technology. The egocentric behavior of quite a few of them pays scant regard to the many other important roles in the aviation system. Let’s call a spade a spade, in other parts of the world they are called glorified traffic cops who only push buttons, and bark orders on a microphone. Other jobs in aviation require even more training and has equal or more impact on the operations. They are after all skilled operators.

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    • Anonymous says:

      First it is not a regulatory requirement to separate the aerodrome and approach staffing — although good for safety. In any case, management should be working towards getting local people prepared for this staffing requirement, rather this knee jerk requirement.

      Further, the separation of aerodrome and approach staffing is not new here in Cayman; it has been in place for the last three to four years.

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    • Anonymous says:

      The CIAA is completely right in their approach, this is a safety issue that is highly regulated to international standards not the local whims of politicians or personnel who don’t understand the industry. The day that we have an accident (God forbid) then fingers will be pointed to everyone involved including the air traffic controllers, they need to ensure they have followed best practise standards and global regulations.

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      • Anonymous says:

        12:19 Do you remember the CAL 737 that ran off the end of the runway? I do and I also know why it happened (not an ATC issue), and that’s why you need outside skills in local aviation.

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        • Anonymous says:

          You don’t know anything sh*t stir*r. And what the hell are outside skills” anyway ? No person is immune and people will make mistakes no matter where they are from, especially in the aviation world. How many planes had runway excursions this winter season in the US alone and half didn’t even make the local evening news. Go find Malaysia 370 Sherlock Holmes.

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          • Anonymous says:

            9:59 ‘How many planes had runway excursions this winter season in the US alone.’ According to FAA stats about a dozen but they were all on icy runways in bad weather with high crosswinds. The CAL 737 landed on a dry, clear runway in calm conditions and simply ran out of road because the pilot forgot that the auto-brake system had been disconnected (somebody onboard just pulled the breakers) to allow the aircraft to fly back here with a fault. Would have happened in the USA? As a licensed pilot I doubt it.

            • Anonymous says:

              2:01 I remember all this very well. The 737 was on just about the final week of it’s lease and CAL were really screwing every last ounce out of it. What they ended up with was a huge repair bill. The aircraft sat under a temporary shelter at ORIA while both engines were replaced – I wonder how much that little screw up cost us? Current price on a CFM56 is about $5million.

            • Anonymous says:

              2:01 Your last comment is interesting. I remember (as a guest not crew) sitting on the flight deck of a Boeing 767 operated by one of the major US airlines while the pilots waited for someone to fix a faulty warning light – it turned out to only be the bulb but they delayed the push back for over 40 minutes to make sure.

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        • Anonymous says:

          2:48 pm: we have many Caymanian pilots. What is your point?

    • Anonymous says:

      Go educate yourself about the Industry, apparently the total ATC process is 24 months from recruit to fully qualified and signed off- Florida pumps out commercial pilots in as little as six months from zero experience to co-pilot on a passenger carrying flights world wide. Some are flying you around right now locally

    • Anonymous says:

      10:24 am/20/02: The 9-month training is the initial training — and no one is implying that that is the end of the training or that they should not get on the job supervision and training.

      This is not a short-cut — this is where it starts.

      Then, if they planned poorly and suddenly need some more highly trained staff — hire a few overseas, but not N I N E.

      No bravo to CICAA at all for dropping the ball and having some sort of outlandish knee jerk reaction.

      The ministry should check into what is going on and take corrective action.

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  21. Anonymous says:

    Mr. Miller’s points are all well and good but if not enough local candidates are applying then the point is moot

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    • Anonymous says:

      Miller sees nationality as being more important than ability to do the job.

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    • Observer says:

      I think Mr. Miller’s point was the volume of overseas recruits — not that there was not a need for contract officers at this juncture. To his point, word on the street is that the CICAA is seeking to recruit close to a half a dozen.

      I had a look at the recruitment ad and it boasted an “initial” two-year (code, more to come) contract and “a generous competency & performance-based Learning and Development Plan.”

      If the recruits are desired for their expertise and experience and if it is a short-term arrangements, then why are we offering this “generous … learning and development plan”?

      Those are the types of inconsistencies that raise concerns all the time. We neglect our own and we offer the moon to people coming in, who stay and stay and stay.

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      • Anonymous says:

        Probably because for staff like this if you’re not keeping up your training you’re not keeping up. So a competitive employer puts ‘training’ as part of the package. For all the staff.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Ezzard is moot.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Ill informed bellowing and not understanding the aviation industry.

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  22. Cyndi Lauperbanks says:

    We see your true colors shining through Ezzard. Back on the soapbox of things you know nothing about. No doubt Bernie will have your back on this ill informed rant.

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