Census to ask questions on food security

| 31/05/2021 | 34 Comments
George Town Primary School students sing the Census 2021 jingle at the launch ceremony

(CNS): What should have been Census 2020 was launched last week as Census 2021 after the national count last year was postponed because of the pandemic. It will now begin on 10 October and is expected to take around three months. The goal is to count every person in every household to enable government to make informed decisions about future policy. But this time around government has added new questions to establish levels of food insecurity as well as issues surrounding health cover and pension provision.

A preliminary census report featuring highlights such as total population is scheduled to be released in first quarter 2022 and the full and final report is scheduled for later that year.

Although the census will not reveal personal information, some members of the public remain suspicious but regardless of any reluctance, participation is mandatory. The Economics and Statistics Office has begun signing up potential census workers on Grand Cayman to participate in the actual count. Hiring and training for some 500 enumerators starts in June..

In addition to questions in this census about food security, questions about farming and fishing have also been added. Premier Wayne Panton explained that this will help government understand what is happening outside the labour force and help charity and community based groups better serve the community and inform government about the levels of poverty.

At the census launch event, Finance Minister Chris Saunders read one of the questions, which asks if anyone in the household had not been able to eat due to a lack of resources for one day in the previous four weeks. In a sample pilot survey, at least 2% of people said yes to that question. Saunders said the census would give a more accurate picture of the real level of food insecurity people in Cayman are facing.

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Category: Government Administration, Politics

Comments (34)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Any day there are close to 100,000 people in these Cayman
    Islands now, according to how many people are on the roads, Construction sights, working in Offices and at home, etc, etc. Etc.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Now food security is an issue after they paved and cement prime farm land for the mental facility. Would have thought farm land should be kept for farming but it appears people can eat concrete and paved roads. SMH

  3. Anonymous says:

    Unless the borders have been opened, I will not be participating in their silly census. Works both ways Wayne.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Anyone for Soylent Green?

  5. Say it like it is. says:

    Were these jobs offered to unemployed Caymanians or listed by WORC, or were they just given to civil servants who have plenty of time to spare from their own jobs?.

    • Anonymous says:

      11.06am More likely unemployed Jamaicans as a Caymanian has not been to my home for the last two counts.

  6. Your post disaster dinner is on a slow boat from China says:

    Food security on an island. Why should this even be a question? The obvious answer is yes food security is and will always be priority number one for our 3 little rocks.
    The boffins within CIG, if they actually have any, need to be formulating plans to resupply Cayman if normal food supply lines get disrupted or cut. I can’t see most residents stepping up and growing their own even if they had the space, it’s like recycling, it doesn’t happen within years, it takes decades for full participation. Maybe CIG has been and is still ignoring the issue just like the solutions to solid waste, overdevelopment, near total reliance on fossil fuels etc?
    What will CIG do with the data even if they manage to get a representative sample, file it and sit on it till disaster happens, probably. Then most likely we will be reliant on food shipments from UK via the Navy.
    This makes no sense at all, this is not a question, it’s a problem that needs solutions on hand for when the $hit hits the fan.

  7. Shane Mcdermot says:

    ILLEGALLY COUGHT FISH IS OUR FOOD SECURITY. all red snapper on isand is illegally cought. Cayman only ownes 12 miles of water not the 200 mile exclusive economic we SHOULD owne. Shame on our worthless government. Fishermen also work under the VISA department who abuse us if we dont XXXX. We need help . There is no licenses no permits no security no legal waters to fish . This is our protein source that government doesn’t care about a whole industry neglected and abused we coulg be exporting seafood not importing all.

    • Anonymous says:

      Seafood won’t exist and neither will we if we left conservation up to fishermen. Which is what CIG seem to do. So I suggest you try beans and legumes for protein.

    • Mumbichi says:

      Shane, you know that historically, our own have overfished. Thing of the grouper seasons of the past. You’ve seen the same things I have.

      There is little doubt to me that some expats hit the shoreline fishing somewhat hard. We do need licenses. If you’ve paid attention, you know that the waters in which we’re allowed to fish has been truncated. So it goes.

      Hope you’re doing okay, and glad to see that you’re still kicking.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Hiring 500 enumerators yet it will take 3 months to conduct???? What kind of joke is this?

    65,000ish people. Most homes have at least 2 persons in it so let’s say 32,500 homes. That means each enumerator only has to go to 65 homes MAXIMUM. That is a extremely conservative calculation as most homes will have more than 2 persons.

    Assuming 4 persons per home, is 16,500 homes or only 32 homes each.

    The census should be able to be knocked out in a couple weeks…..even factoring in return visits for folks not at home on first visit.

    It is reasonable to expect analysis of results to take some time but the actual census-taking should be far quicker than 3 months.

    • Denis Thibeault says:

      The census exercise is not some MonkeySurvey that includes 5-10 questions that anyone answers willy-nilly. Government and many businesses will use the data collected during the exercise to make strategic/policy decisions. SMH.

    • yuhdaddeh says:

      You people just love to complain about EVERYTHING.. Why do you even care how long it takes? *facepalm*

      • Anonymous says:

        2:08 pm, Don’t you have enough common sense to know that we the tax payers are paying those 500 people, longer it takes, more we have to pay. Common sense are not too common anymore

  9. Anonymous says:

    CIG has never helped, nothing during Ivan, no mask during pandemic, why should I tell them anything, they gonna help
    when savings are all used up? They want to know about me now? If it is mandatory, what are consequences a fine? No money. Jail? Will get fed and watered.

  10. Anonymous says:

    No borders, no census.

  11. Beaumont Zodecloun says:

    Why should we not be suspicious? I am never, ever skipped on a census or other questionnaires. They ask intrusive questions, and then get surly when people choose to abstain.

    You want to know what appliances I have? Hell no. You want to know how much money I have? Hell no. You want to know what I think about things? Please ask. I’m more than willing to expound.

    We are likely entering a time of increasing austerity. That’s okay. These adjustments are frequent within the range of history. The Cayman Islands have enjoyed an explosive building boom and real estate boom for the past 15 or so years, and all good things must come to an end. Much of the folk of the developed world consider us safe and stable and want to move here. I welcome them, if they want to do as they do in Rome. I want to preserve our culture, and that has always made room for people to come here and become Caymanians.

    Times are likely to get more difficult. We should all focus as much as we are able upon micro-agriculture. Even when I lived in a city with a small balcony to my apartment, I grew tomatoes and cucumbers. We can all do better. We come from a hardy stock of people, and those not from here that have joined us often have experience with agriculture and farming. We need to be more self-sustaining.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Will all census takers be required to be fully vaccinated? If not, you can forget about me opening my door to them.

  13. Annie says:

    No wonder people are suspicious. We have been kept in the dark since March of 2020. No real information, no idea what is coming down the pike. No idea when we will open, no way to plan for our business nor personal future. Gee, cannot understand why there is a lack of trust.

  14. Anonymous says:

    Do the ESO count people on Temporary Work Permits, Permissions to Continue Working, Snowbirds, Dependents, College Kids, Hospital Patients, Overstayers, or those with less than 6 months to go before their Term Limit?

    • Anonymous says:

      I understand not, which is why our population is consistently under reported.

    • Anonymous says:

      They don’t count people who have permits for less than 6 months or live here for less than six month so dependents and people in hospital are counted. I can’t remember about college kids.

      • Anonymous says:

        So in other words they intentionally do not count thousands of people who live here. Count me out.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Do we get a free whopper if we participate?

  16. Anonymous says:

    Why don’t they just put the questions on a secure web site – so that people can fill it out and send it back in.

    I hate people coming to my house – that I don’t know.

  17. Anonymous says:

    Should be asking about how many educated Caymanians feel unable to afford to buy a home and/or have kids despite a degree.

  18. Anonymous says:

    Not telling them shit.

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