Philippine Officials Visit
A Philippine Government delegation from its Washington, DC Embassy visited with top Cayman Islands officials this week, with a view to establishing stronger relations and addressing the needs of its nationals.
The meetings sought to clarify the situation of the Cayman Islands being named on an employment blacklist by the Asian country, and to assess the employment and consular needs of Filipinos living here. There are currently 2,548 Philippine nationals on work permits; this number does not include dependants, residents and status-holders.
The Washington contingent included Labour Attaché Luzviminda Padilla, Attaché Sofronio Cortel and Welfare Officer Saul DeVries.
They attended meetings with His Excellency the Governor Mr. Duncan Taylor, Deputy Governor Franz Manderson, Attorney General Samuel Bulgin, Portfolio of Internal and External Affairs' Chief Officer Eric Bush, Chief Immigration Officer Linda Evans and Department of Employment Relations Director Jennifer Smith.
The visiting delegates were seeking "evidence of concrete and positive measures on the protection of migrant workers in the Cayman Islands". The Philippine Government certifies host countries which they determine are in compliance with the protection of migrant workers.
The issues which the delegation made enquiries about during their Cayman visit included local labour and social legislation, evidence of Cayman being signatory to international labour standards, and statistics or judgements relating to Filipinos. In turn, they were provided with copies of several relevant laws and other documents. The delegation also attended a lunch hosted by the Chamber of Commerce.
This visit follows a Consular Outreach Mission to the Cayman Islands last December by representatives of the Philippine Embassy in Havana, Cuba.
At that time, 299 Filipinos took advantage of the opportunity to regularise travel documents and address issues such as passport renewals and replacements, validity extensions, and applications for reacquisition of Philippine citizenship.
The Cayman Islands Government expressed confidence that, after reviewing the information provided, the Philippine Government will remove the Cayman Islands from the blacklist. The British Embassy will be following up with the Philippine authorities and representing the Cayman Islands' concerns.
For further information contact: Lennon Christian