The numbers of people among us who are in need seems to be
increasing year by year.
By the end of 2011, almost 9,000 people were holding their
hand out to government for some sort of assistance, up from almost 8,000 people
the year before. The numbers show a 14 per cent increase in people who seek
Minister Mike Adam has said social troubles in the Cayman
Islands begin worsening when our economy began its downturn in 2009. Of that,
we have no doubt.
Most worrying is that the number of people who have remained
active clients at the Department of Children and Family services was 4,343 in
2011, a 64 per cent increase from the number of 2,648 in 2010. There was a big
increase the number of families – 1,423 – that received food voucher assistance
last year, compared to 1,088 in 2010.
It is sad that individuals and families are having to turn
to government for financial assistance, but we are fortunate to live in a
country that is able to help.
Minister Adam assured that government is working to ensure
that the vulnerable are eventually in a position to help themselves. We would
like him to elaborate on just what is being done and reach out the private
sector to help.
There have been repeated calls for government to cut
expenses. If it can come up with a way to help our most vulnerable make ends
meet for themselves, the numbers will shrink and the demand on government will