In the recent survey done by the Cayman Islands Tourism Association on the establishment of captive dolphin facilities in the Cayman Islands approximately 50 per cent of the membership responded, according to President Karie Bergstrom.
With the membership at approximately 170, this would put the number of respondents to the survey at roughly 85.
‘This is statistically significant. This provides enough of a sampling to consider in the world of research and analysis,’ Ms Bergstrom commented.
The survey showed that 74 per cent of respondents (or roughly 63 respondents) voted against the introduction of captive dolphin theme parks here.
The survey, conducted in response to requests from the membership, also showed 13 per cent (or just over 11) of the respondents were neither in favour or opposed to the parks, and the remaining 13 per cent (11 people) were in favour of them.
A position paper was brought out recently by the CITA water-sports committee in response to members’ requests to present findings of research supporting its plea to stop any captive dolphin facility in the Cayman Islands.
In 2001, CITA polled its general membership about the possibility of setting up swim-with-dolphin facilities here. Other members voted for it, but even more did not vote because they did not have enough information to make a definitive decision. In 2004, the water-sports members of CITA voted again, and were unanimously against a captive dolphin facility.
The Board of the CITA asked the Water-sports Committee to develop a position paper and present research and reasons why a captive dolphin facility should not be allowed to open in the Cayman Islands.
The CITA members had a chance to review this position paper before this most recent vote on the controversial topic.