Is national diversity a WORC goal?

| 20/06/2019

Are employers still required to have a diverse range of nationalities among their work permit holders?

Ask Auntie, CNS Local Life, Caymanian status

Auntie’s answer: To offer context, I received this question in response to a CNS article on Governor Martyn Roper posting a graphic on his Facebook page depicting the many nationalities in Cayman on work permits, and saying that it was a sign of the cultural diversity here.

The question refers to the longstanding requirement by the Department of Immigration, now Workforce Opportunities and Residency Cayman (WORC), that companies ensure a mix of different nationalities for their employees on work permits.

A WORC official confirmed that this is still the policy and pointed to the relevant sections of the Immigration (Transition) Law, 2018. Under section 58(4)(c), when the board considers a work permit application, it must take into account “the requirements of the community as a whole, the demographics referred to in section 30(j) and such other matters that may arise from the application”.

And section 30 says, “In the course of processing an application for the right to be Caymanian, the board shall satisfy itself that – (j) adequate consideration has been given to the desirability of granting the right to be Caymanian to applicants with different backgrounds and from different geographical areas so that a suitable balance in the social and economic life of the Islands may be maintained.”

Even though section 30 refers to applications for the right to be Caymanian, according to section 58 quoted above the same stipulation obtains for work permits. The official explained, “Accordingly, employers must always take this into consideration when recruiting from overseas unless otherwise advised by the department. The law does not stipulate a quota or number of workers and as such, it is left to the discretion of the board and/or director in determining balance in the workforce as it relates to the above sections of law.”

The law mentioned above can be found on the CNS Library

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Category: Ask Auntie, Immigration Questions

Comments (3)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    it’s 60/40 and a lot of companies are getting in trouble because they don’t follow this, bu then again this is at discretion right?

  2. Anonymous says:

    And if WORC did it’s job there would not be any businesses that employ only one nationality. Unfortunately there ar many, including in construction and security.