Letters to the Editor: Reducing unemployment is nonsense

It
is plain nonsense to think that further development is going to improve the
unemployment rate of Caymanians. If the huge Ritz development and the huge
Caymana Bay development and several large shopping centres did nothing to
decrease unemployment, then why would anyone think that a big hospital, another
resort and numerous other developments is going to make a particle of
difference.

There
are hundreds of jobs right now that virtually every unemployed Caymanian could
do, so why won’t they take them? There are many under educated, inexperienced
young Caymanians that should be starting at the beginning of the employment
ladder, as I and most others did. They can start out as waitresses, as I did,
or as gardeners (I mowed lawns in high school), or construction helpers, or
laundry workers, security guards or watersports attendants. But no, those jobs
are just not good enough. And for those jobs that require a solid education,
our public schools have really let our youth down. They allow kids to pass just
for trying hard or being nice. These kids were then fooled into thinking that
they were training their brains properly when in fact they were allowing their
brains to sit on idle.

Every
society has people with a variety of skills and interests and usually every
society has jobs that match those varied skills from tasks that take 10 minutes
to learn from jobs that need eight years of university. Cayman is slightly
different in that we have an unusually high number of skilled accounting and legal
positions that require a real education. However, we do not have mass agricultural
or minimal skilled manufacturing positions in proper proportion. Thus, our
inexperienced, undereducated new employees simply MUST start to accept jobs that
may not appeal to them.

I
have had many Caymanians wanting a job at my photo centre when they had none of
the qualifications I require. I mention to them that they should become a
waitress while they continue school. But they become insulted. I waitressed for
a lot of years, starting as a car-hop at a hot dog and root-beer restaurant
called the Dog and Suds. I waited on my friends on weekends as they sat in
their cars and I brought them their food on trays that hooked onto their
windows. When I broke my foot in physical education class, I propped it up on
the trash can behind me while I washed dishes. But I earned enough money to get
started in college. (My parents gave me NOTHING for school.) In college I was a
short-order cook and dishwasher, I worked at a co-op and was finally a teaching
assistant in grad school. I learned a lot about doing a good job, working with
people and bosses and I make no apology for my many hours in the food industry.

Waitressing
is not difficult to learn, but it is hard work. You have to be diligent, have a
good memory, a good attitude and a desire to assure that your customer has a
great experience. If a Caymanian cannot be a good waiter or waitress, or a
security guard, or a laundry worker then perhaps they are just not employable
and all of the massive development ruining our land will not change that.

Cathy
Church

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