LA roundup: Self-defence, firearms motions pass

Three legislative motions generally asking for greater rights to self-defence and individual protection were approved earlier this week by local lawmakers after some changes were made to those proposals.  

The first motion, brought by Opposition Leader Alden McLaughlin, sought to legalise chemical sprays such as pepper spray, mace and tear gas for self-protection. Currently, those items are illegal for sale in the Cayman Islands.  

During debate on the proposal, ruling government members amended the motion to require users of pepper sprays or mace obtain a licence from the police prior to using such items. Also, the section of the motion that sought to legalise tear gas was removed.  

The second motion, also from Mr. McLaughlin, proposed what would essentially be a dilution of the local police commissioner’s sole discretion over who can own a firearm.  

The motion sought to establish a committee of at least four, including the police commissioner, and three local justices of the peace appointed by the governor.  

The committee – called the Firearms Authority in the motion – would then decide on private firearms ownership applications.  

The second motion was also changed to add a fifth member to the proposed authority; the president of the Cayman Islands Sports Shooting Association.  

A third motion brought by George Town MLA Kurt Tibbetts asked local laws be amended to allow security guards non-lethal means of protection, including bullet-proof vests, batons, handcuffs, pepper spray, mace and tear gas. Tear gas was again removed from the motion following amendments by the ruling government.  

The motion was also changed to remove a section that looked to allow firearms licences to be issued to properly trained private security personnel.  

Cayman’s Private Security Services Law already gives the government the ability to provide firearms licences to private security services meeting criteria to obtain those 

Private members motions passed in the Legislative Assembly are not legally binding.  

Rather, the motions are considered advisory to the ruling government, which can then choose the manner and time in which it acts upon approved motions. 


  1. Why do people in Cayman require firearms if it is not for sport shooting or farming to dispatch livestock. There is no other reason unless you want easier access criminals to obtain a weapon. Strangely enough no one appears to be interested in the other aspect of increase firearms and that is accidental discharge killing or injury to third party people.

    For people who have never fired a weapon you may think it is just like the films but this is not true most short barrelled weapon are not accurate over much distance yet the bullets travels many yards and due to size through things as well. If weapons are not cleaned properly than carbon build up can cause stoppages and potential misfire.

    Cayman would be a safer place if illegal firearms were not imported instead of passing laws for greater access. Open you eyes and report boats going and coming in along the shoreline – help the police stop this and let the Cayman be the safe place it once was happen again.

  2. There is no greater means of safety than for law-abiding citizens to be able to possess firearms. I live in Grand Cayman and Texas on a split basis. Since Texas passed their concealed carry permit law, crime has dropped substantially. Interviews with arrested criminals are saying they are reluctant to brandish a firearm for fear of not knowing who else around them have them too. You will never stop illegal firearms. When firearms are illegal, only illegals have firearms. That is factual the world over.

  3. Tartan.export (Scottish),

    I can think of a number of other lawful reasons other than ‘sport shooting or farming’ why people could own firearms, but the one I suspect you really want to look down upon is personal protection. Section 18(1) of the Firearms Law (2008 Revision) reads: ‘No person shall discharge any firearm on or within forty yards of any public road or in any public place except – in the lawful protection of his person or property or of the person or property of some other person’.

    Regarding ‘films’, clearly you want to mislead those who are new to firearms, your half-truth is a whole lie. The truth is that while the movies are fantasy, any type of device made will have their own limitations. One of the limitations of a handgun is that it cannot accurately deliver a bullet to a distance equal to a rifle. However, that is one of the reasons why different types of firearms are manufactured. Here in the Cayman Islands, we shoot handguns accurately between the distances of three to fifty meters. Since most acts of personal protection occur within 50M, what is your point, other than from your anti-firearm position, you dislike private firearm ownership?

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