Leader of the Opposition McKeeva Bush has made a Private Member’s Motion calling for four women to be made national heroes.
The motion, which was seconded by Opposition MLA for Cayman Brac and Little Cayman Julianna O’Connor-Connolly, notes that it has been some time since the Legislative Assembly designated anyone as a national hero.
The motion states ‘we all desire to nationally recognise the contribution women have made in these islands’.
Mr. Bush explained on Monday why he suggested the four women, Mary Evelyn Wood, Joyce Hylton, Beulah McLaughlin and Almira Tomlinson, all of whom are now deceased.
‘We agreed to put some emphasis on women next year,’ he said, noting that 2009 marks the 50th anniversary of Cayman’s first constitution, which first gave women the right to vote.
‘I believe these women have contributed significantly to the country.’
Mr. Bush said Miss Wood, or Miss Evie as she was known, was the first women to be elected to the Legislative Assembly, as well as a nurse and a church leader.
‘And Joyce Hylton can be considered the mother of our modern social services,’ he said. ‘In every phase you can think of, she was there pushing and getting things started.’
Mr. Bush said Miss McLaughlin was an important midwife on Grand Cayman for many years and Mrs. Tomlinson was an important midwife on Cayman Brac.
Mr. Bush said he hoped the government could make the designation of national hero to the four women in time for National Heroes Day in 2009, which takes place 26 January.