Issues

21 people in 2021: Kristy Rivers

The workplace is changing. That’s evident as many businesses look for alternatives to the traditional long-term lease, particularly in the wake of the pandemic.

21 people in 2021: Colin Lumsden

City Manager Colin Lumsden is continuing his mission to bring back vibrancy to the nation’s capital.

21 people in 2021: Sara Jan

People are at the heart of everything that Sara Jan and her business partner Karen Kersey do.

Premier: New local access road to relieve Red Bay traffic woes

Premier Alden McLaughlin has said agreement has been reached with Grand Harbour and Davenport Development for a local access road for the Red Bay and Prospect communities to ease traffic woes in the area.

Police vehicles involved in crash

The RCIPS Traffic and Roads Policing Unit launched an investigation Wednesday after two police vehicles were involved in a collision.

Interactive: From sewers and sub-sea cables to prisons and power generation

In a series of stories, journalist James Whittaker takes a look at how population growth affects every aspect of infrastructure in the Cayman Islands.

Charting a course: Women in modern maritime industries

Times are changing Not satisfied with a background role, women in today’s maritime industry are stepping forward and upward. Their impact - in shore-based and seagoing roles including female seafarers, captains of mega-ships, CEOs of shipping companies, and maritime lawyers, to name but a few - is thankfully becoming increasingly hard to ignore.

How Cayman developed a seafaring identity

To those Caymanians who are dismayed by the possibility of a dying heritage, recognise, without apology, that you are already emotionally attached to your ancestors, and so you do not need to live as they did to safeguard your past – your past has already been lived and thus felt on your behalf.

Cayman maintains shipbuilding tradition with a twist

Off island, Cayman maintains a strong reputation in the shipbuilding business. In particular, Cayman has risen as a recognised and reliable jurisdiction for managing yacht construction, overseeing 43% of new builds in the superyacht business

Year in Review: The summer of sargassum

An occasional menace in summers past, sargassum swamped Cayman’s beaches in such volumes this year, the problem became impossible to ignore.

Under the weed, life abounds

The large floating mats of algae provide shelter for juvenile fish, eels and sea turtles. Flying fish lay their eggs amid this tangled mass. A vast cast of eclectic critters, like the thumbnail-sized sargassum frog fish, live their entire lives within the weed.

For sea turtles and sargassum, the relationship is complicated

At sea, sargassum provides vital shelter for a variety of species. Young turtle hatchlings even hitch rides on these floating mats, as they venture into the open ocean. But when the algae comes ashore in significant quantities, this beneficial relationship is betrayed.

The first 100 days: How PACT could look to make a quick impact

As the Cayman Islands looks ahead to a new era under the leadership of Premier Wayne Panton, a blueprint for the possible direction of the country is beginning to emerge.

Interactive map: Farm to fork in 20,000 miles

With the help of Progressive Distributors, the Cayman Compass tracks some of the main ingredients from farm or factory to our table.

COVID impacts food supply chain

The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted the local and global food supply chains and is likely to continue to do so for the forseeable future,...

JMC tackles climate change, COVID-19

The UK and its Overseas Territories, including Cayman, have committed to work together on climate change with the aim of securing agreement on "ambitious action" to tackle the issue on a global scale at the COP26 Summit in Glasgow next year.

Governor: World is at a ‘tipping point’ on climate change

The UK hopes to play a bigger role in driving global action on climate change in a development that has implications for Cayman, Governor Martyn Roper has said.
Climate analyst Rueanna Haynes says small islands are fighting for their survival in climate change negotiations.

Small islands can ‘lead by example’ in climate fight

Low-lying islands like Grand Cayman could become uninhabitable within the next century without “transformative change” in the global approach to climate change. That’s the verdict of Rueanna Haynes, a climate analyst and guest speaker at the RF Cayman Economic Outlook conference.

Calico’s owner: ‘We should have built piers years ago’

Handel Whittaker is one of the most recognisable faces on Seven Mile Beach. After nearly two decades as the proprietor of Calico Jack’s and...

Langevin: ‘Do we want quality or quantity?’

As the manager of the Cayman Islands’ most luxurious resort, Marc Langevin has a vested interest in the future of the island’s tourism product. Amid an ongoing debate about tourism growth, the general manager of The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman is keen to see the island retain its reputation as a safe, high-quality destination.
Tourists on Seven Mile Beach

How much tourism is too much for a small island?

Cayman's tourism industry is thriving. But amid the debate over if and how to develop the island's port facilities, some are wondering, if the growth in visitors is sustainable and what the impact of rising visitation might mean for the island over the coming decades.
The George Town landfill, also known as Mount Trashmore

Half a century of Mount Trashmore

What started as an informal dump site in the 1960s has now become a protagonist in day-to-day life in Cayman. The Compass compiled a short history of waste management in Grand Cayman to explain how the island got to this point.

Post-Dorian Bahamas reexamines climate-resilient tourism

Bahamas Prime Minister Hubert Minnis describes Hurricane Dorian as a watershed moment for the Commonwealth nation. There is The Bahamas that existed before September 2019, and the nation now, fully aware of its vulnerability to climate change as a developing island state.

Kirkconnell: Caribbean tourism ‘stronger together’

During the Caribbean Travel Marketplace in Nassau, Bahamas, the Cayman Compass caught up with Minister of Tourism Moses Kirkconnell to discuss climate-resilient tourism in the Caribbean region, cruise tourism and the benefits of regional collaboration.

This week

All Issues

Premier: No plans for a cruise berthing project

Premier Wayne Panton said his PACT administration has no plans for a cruise berthing project nor has government held any discussions with Royal Caribbean on the matter.

Waste-to-energy: Expensive technology that aims to solve landfill problem

At the 5th Caribbean Infrastructure Forum, a discussion by waste-management experts highlighted the many challenges faced by countries in the region to deal with the waste they produce.

The first 100 days: How PACT could look to make a quick impact

As the Cayman Islands looks ahead to a new era under the leadership of Premier Wayne Panton, a blueprint for the possible direction of the country is beginning to emerge.

Spiralling costs spark calls for healthcare reform

With the cost of living taking centre stage during the election campaign, the price of healthcare has been examined as one of the factors that drive up expenses for both consumers and the government.

Digital medicine a potential healthcare game changer

Island nations all face similar unique challenges in the delivery of healthcare, ranging from lower economies of scale, due to a limited pool of...

10 big issues that could sway the election

From COVID to the cost-of-living we examine where some of the key players stand on 10 key issues ahead of Wednesday's general election in the Cayman Islands.

Candidates seek to balance environment and the economy

Candidates campaigning for election agree that Cayman's future development must consider both the economy and the environment but differ on where the right balance lies.
Eden Hurlston of Amplify Cayman

Amplify Cayman: ‘Runaway train of reckless development must stop’

Irresponsible development in the Seven Mile Beach area is creating a “perfect storm of ecological, cultural and economic devastation”, according to pressure group Amplify Cayman.

The battle for the beach

A towering construction crane casts its shadow across the soft white sand of Seven Mile Beach as the clear blue water stretches out towards the horizon. It’s an image that encapsulates some of the conflict surrounding the future of Cayman’s greatest natural asset and number one tourist attraction.

Plan Cayman seeks to guide growth

Consultation over an ‘area plan’ for the Seven Mile Beach corridor is effectively on hold until after the election, the Department of Planning has confirmed.
Camana Bay

Dart outlines ambitions for Seven Mile corridor

Taller buildings in high-density areas, an extended network of footpaths and cycle trails and greater flexibility for ‘mixed-use’ development are all on the wish list of the Dart group for the future of the Seven Mile Beach corridor.

Real estate industry: ‘Luxury property a low-impact alternative to mass-tourism’

Luxury property development has a key role to play in the future of the Seven Mile Beach corridor and in driving Cayman’s economy, real estate industry insiders believe.

Natural and man-made problems cast shadows over Seven Mile’s future

Sea-level rise and storm impacts pose a serious long-term threat to the viability of Seven Mile Beach as a national recreational asset, the Department of Environment has warned.

A window into Seven Mile Beach’s past

On a quiet stretch of beach behind a low seawall a brightly painted cottage - now more than 80-years-old - provides a window through which modern visitors can imagine Seven Mile Beach as it once was.

Rethinking our divided school system

Calls to end 'segregation' in schools and allow Caymanian and expat children to sit alongside each other in the islands’ classrooms are ringing out on the election campaign trail. We look at if and how that could happen.

Transformation of England’s ‘worst school’ a lesson for Cayman?

The story of how the ‘worst school in England’ was transformed to become one of the country’s best has been highlighted as a blueprint for the Cayman Islands to follow if it wants to integrate schools and raise standards.

Election retrospective: New faces, familiar issues

In the run-up to almost every Cayman Islands general election over the past 30 years, the same issues of immigration, education and training, development and cost-of-living have dominated the debate.

Two decades of ideas under the microscope

Over the past two decades, Cayman’s legislators have dedicated countless days of debate to discuss proposals put forward by backbenchers or opposition members.

Interactive map: Farm to fork in 20,000 miles

With the help of Progressive Distributors, the Cayman Compass tracks some of the main ingredients from farm or factory to our table.

COVID impacts food supply chain

The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted the local and global food supply chains and is likely to continue to do so for the forseeable future,...

Planes, trucks and freighters: Unravelling the global supply chain that feeds Cayman

As a small island with negligible food production, Cayman relies on a complex global supply chain to keep its stores stocked. A handful of companies source products and produce from across the globe. We take a closer look at how they do it and the multiple factors that drive up costs for Cayman shoppers.

Many Caymanians can’t afford to retire

A large swathe of the Cayman population has not saved enough money to retire and will likely need to be subsidised by government in their later years.

Cayman’s $2.5 billion credit bill

Cayman Islands residents have collectively amassed more than US $2.5 billion dollars in household debt, according to figures from the Cayman Islands Monetary Authority.

Thousands go into debt to fund Cayman lifestyle

Thousands of Cayman Islands residents are going into debt to keep up with the cost-of-living. A new money-management course is seeking to teach people to live within their means, whatever they earn. But instructors warn too many people are using credit to fund lifestyles they can't afford.

Million dollar babies: The eye-opening costs of parenting in Cayman

The right to a family life is promised to all in the Cayman Islands Constitution but that comes with no guarantee that it will be affordable. As part of our ongoing cost-of-living series we examine some of the expenses involved in raising a child in one of the costliest places on the planet...

400 applicants seek affordable housing

Affordable housing in the Cayman Islands continues to be a challenge, one that National Housing Development Trust general manager Julio Ramos knows all too well. The NHDT boss struggles daily to find ways to meet the demand for affordable housing that his agency was created to address.

What does it cost to raise a child in Cayman?

The cost of having children in Cayman can vary wildly. We have approximated a range of lifetime costs for some of the main expenses and found that, in some cases, raising a child can cost as much as $1 million.

Counting the cost of living in the Cayman Islands

In a comprehensive data analysis, James Whittaker and Michael Klein examine some of the highest costs of living in Cayman and assess how we measure up to the United Kingdom and the United States.

Cayman shoppers pay premium for groceries

The Compass analysed prices for 16 common items and found Cayman shoppers are paying a substantial premium on every item compared with our neighbours in the US.

Economist cautions Cayman must address wealth disparity

Cayman may have become a ‘victim of its own success’ with high prices for food, housing and utilities outstripping those expenses in the US...

Editorial: Cayman’s high cost-of-living impacts us all

The extent of the mark-up Cayman Islands residents pay for food, housing and other essentials compared with residents in the US and the UK is staggering.

Regulator: Scrutiny has helped bring down fuel prices

Regulators believe they are making progress in bringing down consumer costs for fuel, water and electricity.

Cayman has made giant strides in ‘healthcare security’

Significant leaps forward in Cayman’s healthcare capacity helped the islands weather the storm of COVID-19 far better than it may have done a decade ago.

Side effects of COVID crisis impacting health system

The aftershocks of the COVID-19 pandemic and the measures taken to fight it are causing a wave of secondary health impacts across the Cayman Islands.

Around 1,000 people seek jobs through WORC

Expat exodus helped protect Cayman from COVID fall-out There are currently just less than 1,000 people registered as unemployed and actively seeking jobs in the...

Expat exodus helped protect Cayman from COVID fall-out

The number of people on work permits in the Cayman Islands dropped by almost 5,000 in the past year, helping to insulate the islands from some of the unemployment impact of the COVID-19 crisis.

Decriminalising suicide is just a first step

In December, the Cayman Islands government decriminalised suicide in the islands. The move has been hailed as a victory that helps remove the stigma often associated with mental illness. But campaigners say it is just the beginning of the legal and mindset changes required to ensure people with serious mental health conditions get the help they need.

‘We are hanging on by the skin of our teeth’

The arrival of a COVID-19 vaccine on Cayman's shores means there is finally light at the end of the tunnel for self-employed Caymanians and business owners impacted by the pandemic. But with bills mounting, many operators fear they may not survive long enough to be there when the tourists return.

Thousands go without health insurance amid pandemic

Thousands of Caymanians could be going without health insurance amid increasing unemployment caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and border closure.

21 people in 2021: Kristy Rivers

The workplace is changing. That’s evident as many businesses look for alternatives to the traditional long-term lease, particularly in the wake of the pandemic.

21 people in 2021: Colin Lumsden

City Manager Colin Lumsden is continuing his mission to bring back vibrancy to the nation’s capital.

21 people in 2021: Sara Jan

People are at the heart of everything that Sara Jan and her business partner Karen Kersey do.

21 people in 2021: Denise Powers

For Denise Powers, the COVID-19 crisis has provided an opportunity to adapt her business and help other Cayman Islands companies change with the times. 

21 people in 2021: Jason Washington

If there’s anything Jason Washington has learned from 25 years in the dive industry, it’s that flexibility is a must. 

21 people in 2021: Sergio Coni

A dive operator's schedule was pretty clear-cut prior to COVID-19. That isn't the case anymore.

21 people in 2021: Mike Mannisto

While the Cayman 2.0 series has thus far been looking at the ideas and strategies that could make the country a better place, we’re...

21 people in 2021: Blair Lilford

While the Cayman 2.0 series has thus far been looking at the ideas and strategies that could make the country a better place, we’re...

21 people in 2021: Stacy McAfee

While the Cayman 2.0 series has thus far been looking at the ideas and strategies that could make the country a better place, we’re...

21 people in 2021: Juliet Austin

It’s no secret there are students in Cayman who struggle to read and write at an appropriate level. That's where LIFE and Juliet Austin come in.

21 people in 2021: Brandon Caruana

For Brandon Caruana, Code Cayman’s role is pretty clear: “demystifying technology."

21 people in 2021: Jordan Stubblefield

Jordan Stubblefield believes pharma-tourism can be the next big thing for Cayman's tourism product.

21 people in 2021: Josephine Horwitz

A fully operations hydroponic farm is the goal over the next 12 months is simple for Botanic Farms director Josephine Horwitz. 

21 people in 2021: Lauren Nelson

With five programmes aimed at assisting Cayman’s children – some of whom are considered at-risk or special needs, or come from low-income homes – National Council of Voluntary Organisations board chair Lauren Nelson sees the potential for how the NCVO can help shape the next generation.

21 people in 2021: Dr. Marc Lockhart

When it comes to looking forward to 2021, Dr. Marc Lockhart is keeping his goals simple – open the long-term mental health facility under construction in East End. 

21 people in 2021: Louisa Sax

Louisa Sax, author of Hawksbill Hero and the Parrotfish Reef, hopes to encourage young students to find a passion for reading and ocean conservation.
Ritz Carlton manager Marc Langevin

21 people in 2021: Marc Langevin

Marc Langevin has seen a lot of good ideas discussed, debated and published in various reports during his decade in the Cayman Islands. He wants to make sure ideas created during the pandemic become reality.

21 people for 2021: Adam Sax

While the Cayman 2.0 series has thus far been looking at the ideas and strategies that could make the country a better place, we’re...

21 people in 2021: Rachel Smyth

Police issued 272 tickets for driving under the influence is 2019. Rachel Smyth aims to use app-based ride-hailing service Flex to help curb drunk driving in Cayman.

21 people in 2021: Andre Gooden

Andre Gooden quit his corporate job to begin doing what he loved -- living sustainably. That passion has now helped him launch a carpentry business.

21 people in 2021: James Whittaker

James Whittaker is one of the 21 people who can help make Cayman more sustainable in 2021.

Education and opportunity in Cayman: 10 things we have learned

A review of some of the key conclusions and ideas coming out of the Compass' Issues series on education and opportunity in Cayman, from the perspective of those it impacts most – the students themselves.

Education and opportunity through the eyes of one high-school class

More than a decade after high-school graduation, we tracked down the Class of 2008 to find out where they are now and what the struggles and successes of one class can tell us about how the system works - or doesn't - for young people trying to make their way in modern Cayman.

In Profile: The Class of 2008

As part of our feature series on education and opportunity we spoke to several graduates of the Class of 2008 to find out where they are now and the struggles and successes they had experienced in the years since high-school. These are their stories.

The great divide: Fighting education inequality in Cayman

As Cayman continues to develop its modern knowledge-based economy, concern is growing that some are being left behind. In a special feature today we look at the links between economic and education inequality and some of the programs seeking to bridge the divide.

Myles: Poverty a neglected issue in Cayman

Poverty and its consequences have been a neglected problem in Cayman for too long, according to former government at-risk youth officer Michael Myles.

Schools inspector: Good teaching key to fixing education inequality

There is a ‘clear link’ between economic disadvantage and academic outcomes in Cayman’s schools, according to government’s chief schools inspector Peter Carpenter.

My Cayman 2.0: Cayman could be a virtual college town

You have heard about digital nomads moving to Cayman to work remotely in the COVID-era, how about student nomads? In a guest column, Nick Joseph, an attorney with HSM Chambers argues that the new visa regulations create the opportunity for Cayman to become a 'college town'.

Class of COVID-19: Pandemic is shaping future of Cayman’s graduates

This generation of Cayman Islands students is graduating into a changed world amid the ongoing impact of the pandemic. COVID-19 has brought disruption, anxiety and mental health challenges for young people but it is also shaping a desire to make their world and their island a better place.

Anxiety and hope for class of 2020

Teachers and counsellors at Cayman’s high schools watched their students graduate in the midst of a pandemic with a mixture of anxiety, pride and hope for their futures.

Graduates encouraged to sign up with WORC

College and university graduates are being encouraged to take opportunities to step into the world of work – even if it is not in the field they studied for.

Five ideas for a green recovery

As Cayman plans its vision for a post-COVID future, ideas are emerging for a green recovery. Here we summarise some of the recommendations from various reports and advisors that they say can help grow jobs and protect the environment.

Guest column: How Fountainhead decided to go fully remote

How Fountainhead decided to go fully remote, along with some benefits and challenges that other services businesses should consider when contemplating a similar move.