The Ministry of Tourism has extended the deadline for the tourism-stipend survey from today until Tuesday, 6 July, as at least 600 people who are receiving the monthly payments have not yet completed it.
According to a ministry spokesperson, about 2,700 of the mandatory online surveys have been submitted so far.
As of May, 3,371 people were receiving the $1,500 stipend.
The ministry launched the survey last week in a bid to establish in what areas of tourism the stipend recipients had been working, and if they were interested in returning to those roles or were looking for new opportunities.
In a statement released when the survey was launched, Tourism Minister Kenneth Bryan said, “The data collected from stipend recipients will allow for more accountability, and will help me to ensure that the skills of our Caymanian people are being appropriately matched to the available jobs.”
Workers who have been displaced from their tourism-industry jobs due to COVID-19 and the border closure have been receiving the monthly stipend, costing more than $5 million a month.
The stipend programme has been extended until the end of year, with full payments of $1,500 a month until October, and a reduction to $750 in November and December, pending the reopening of the borders.
Speaking at a press briefing last month, Bryan encouraged all recipients of the stipend to fill out the survey truthfully, stating that even if they are currently employed in another industry, it will not affect their receipt of the stipend.
The survey form also includes a paragraph which states that it is a criminal offence “to make any statement which is false” or which the respondent believes not to be true, and that anyone found to be making a false statement in the survey will have their stipend suspended immediately.
The offence falls under section 120 of the Penal Code, which says that anyone who deliberately gives untrue information to a public service employee is liable to a fine of $400 and to imprisonment for three years.