Picture this: Pristine beaches, crystal-clear waters, and lush greenery—these are the images that come to mind when one thinks of the Cayman Islands. However, beneath this postcard-perfect exterior lies a growing menace: littering and illegal dumping. The Beautification Task Force (BTF), in partnership with the Ministry of Tourism and Ports (MOTP), has embarked on a mission to rescue this paradise from the clutches of litter and waste.
In the face of mounting littering and illegal dumping issues, the Cayman Islands find themselves at a crossroads. Not only is this behavior unsightly and detrimental to our health, but it also threatens the very essence of the Cayman Islands as a clean and well-preserved haven for tourists.
Taking a bold stance against this environmental degradation, the Beautification Task Force has launched a comprehensive public education campaign. This initiative aims to combat the escalating littering problem, instill a sense of accountability, and foster community responsibility.“
Littering is a grave concern, one that imposes increasing burdens on our society, both economically and environmentally,” emphasizes Hon. Kenneth Bryan, Minister for Tourism. He throws his full weight behind the campaign, which aims to tackle littering by preventing, detecting, and deterring this anti-social behavior. The message is clear: every resident, worker, and visitor to the Cayman Islands must take responsibility for keeping our islands clean.
The Nationwide Crusade
Running from August 1st to October 31st, 2023, this nationwide campaign deploys a diverse arsenal of media outlets, including radio, newspapers, digital advertising, social media platforms, bus shelter advertisements, and strategically positioned roadside signs. By harnessing the unique strengths of each medium, the campaign casts a wide net, driving home the message that littering is a crime. It calls upon all members of the community to unite and be a ‘part of the solution, not the pollution.’
Parliamentary Secretary Heather Bodden, entrusted with overseeing the Beautification Task Force, passionately echoes this sentiment. She stresses the need to rekindle pride in our islands and protect our beautiful country for present and future generations. Heather points out the rise in abandoned vehicles as a particular concern, but she also emphasizes that messy properties and illegally dumped household items send a message that such behavior is acceptable—a message that needs to change.
Theresa Pitcairn, Chair of the Beautification Task Force, elaborates on this point. “Through this campaign, the Ministry and the BTF are reminding citizens and residents of their collective responsibility in maintaining the cleanliness of the Cayman Islands.” She pairs awareness of the environmental consequences of littering with the legal repercussions under the Litter Act (1997 Revision). It’s a clear call to responsible behavior, backed by penalties for those who flout the rules.
A Collective Effort
The Ministry of Tourism & Ports and the Beautification Task Force extend an invitation to all residents and visitors to actively engage with the campaign. You can do your part by sharing messages discouraging littering, participating in community clean-up initiatives, and raising awareness about the campaign’s vital purpose.
“Together, let us stand as guardians of these breathtaking islands, working hand-in-hand to combat littering and illegal dumping, safeguarding the Cayman Islands’ natural beauty for generations to come,” urges PS Bodden.
Reporting littering, illegal dumping, or the whereabouts of derelict vehicles is a breeze. Simply contact the Department of Environmental Health (DEH) at 949-6696 or use the DEH’s online complaints portal.
Stay updated and join the movement on Facebook