What are the criteria for someone in the Cayman Islands to be given a state funeral and who makes the decision? I have heard all sorts of frightening suggestions, such as all those ex-speakers and ministers with honourable before their name in perpetuity. Surely that can’t be so in such a small community?
Auntie’s answer: The explanation you seek comes from the Protocol Office, which is responsible for managing a host of official events. As you suggested, MLAs are indeed on the list for this potential recognition.
Cayman actually has a “funerals policy”, according to the office, which considers these ceremonies an “expression of the highest honour”. In Cayman, however, the occasion is “called an ‘official’ funeral instead of a ‘state’ funeral as we are not a state but a dependent country”, the protocol representative pointed out.
These funerals are normally reserved for those people who have contributed to the Cayman Islands “at the very apex of leadership”.
The funerals policy sets out three categories of people who would be considered for this honour:
- The governor or any civil servant who has acted in the post
- All serving and former members of the Legislative Assembly
- Other important persons of national significance.
The last category is defined as people acknowledged for their contributions through such channels as the Queen’s birthday honours, National Hero award and other official recognition schemes and ceremonies.
Category: Ask Auntie