Eleven new recruits have signed up
for the latest basic training course for the Cayman Islands Immigration
Department. They are the first new cadet class the department has seen since
2007. The last class graduation held by immigration was in May 2008.
The month-long Immigration Recruit
Basic Training Course covers topics such as forgery detection; interview techniques;
behaviour analysis; enforcement; and intelligence.
“In order to become immigration
officers, you must first pass this training programme,” Chief Immigration
Officer Linda Evans told the new batch of recruits recently. “You have an awesome
responsibility and a delicate balancing act, as both gatekeepers and goodwill
ambassadors for the Cayman Islands.” She emphasised the need for teamwork in an
unpredictable environment, and admonished the recruits to take pride in their
positions, whether in uniform or not.
The training includes field
exercises and tactical training, as well as classroom presentations. Some
sessions are led by other government agencies, including the departments of
Tourism, Prisons, Customs and Computer Services. The Royal Cayman Islands
Police Service will conduct training on ethics, interviewing, target identification
and law enforcement, while a private law firm will conduct training on the
Immigration Law and Regulations.
Franz Manderson, a career civil
servant and former immigration chief, was the class’ first lecturer. Noting that immigration officers deal with
many issues – from sham marriages to employment matters – Mr. Manderson directed
them to learn local legislation, as well as international rules, governing
people such as asylum-seekers and refugees.
Encouraging officers not to be
judgmental or discriminatory, he added: “Your business is dealing with facts
and certainty, while treating everyone fairly and consistently.”