The ink is barely dry on the legislation approved last month
that ushers in the ability of Cabinet to create Caymanian only jobs and a
problem has already arisen.
Insisting that only Caymanians drive tour buses is causing
at least one owner of a transport company to throw up his hands.
It would be wonderful if every tourist who avails themselves
of public transportation while visiting the Cayman Islands is treated to a ride
in a vehicle driven by a native Caymanian.
The tour operator owner in today’s front page article tells
us that, as recently as two weeks ago, the agency that is in charge of helping
Caymanians find jobs,told him there aren’t any Caymanians looking for a job as
a tour bus driver.
Passage of the Caymanian-only jobs bill was pure
electioneering on the part of those who introduced the legislation at the 11th
hour and the lawmakers who OK’d it.
Don’t get us wrong. Ensuring that Caymanians get jobs is critical
to our country. If government would enforce immigration laws already on the
books by appointing properly functioning boards, qualified Caymanians would be
in jobs instead of expatriates.
Who in government is tasked with ensuring that Caymanians
are receiving training to take over jobs from expats in the private sector? It
isn’t being done.
As we have stated before, the government must work with the
businesses here to determine which jobs will be needed for the future and
properly educate and train Caymanians to do those jobs.
At the end of the day, the recently passed legislation
concerning Caymanian-only jobs may just end up doing more harm than good. Small
business owners may find themselves out of work if they can’t find Caymanians
trained or willing to do those Caymanian-only jobs.
Residents of Grand Cayman – Caymanians and expats alike –
depend on the public transportation system to get to their jobs and run
If the owners of the transportation companies can’t find
Caymanian drivers, they’ll be forced to shut down and the entire Island could
be brought to its knees.