National Culture & Heritage Policy and Strategic Plan for the Cayman Islands 2017-2026
The country’s first National Culture & Heritage Policy and Strategic Plan was tabled in the Legislative Assembly’s final session by the Hon. Premier and Minister for Health & Culture, Mr. Alden McLaughlin.
Cabinet approved the historic document on Tuesday, 21 February 2017.
“This policy and strategic plan is an expression of this Government’s belief that we need to adopt and implement a set of coherent principles and aims to foster, nurture and support the cultural expression of the people of the Cayman Islands; preserve our heritage; and help grow our individual and collective knowledge of the arts and creative industries,” the Hon. Premier and Minister for Health & Culture, Alden McLaughlin said in his tabling speech.
In late 2015 Cabinet tasked the Ministry of Health & Culture with developing a 10-year National Culture and Heritage Policy and Strategic Plan (2017-2027). A fifteen-member Culture and Heritage Steering Committee was convened which has met several times to date. Six focus groups were also convened, comprising a total of approximately 70 area-experts, each specialising in a specific area of culture and heritage which include: land-based heritage (including leisure and cultural tourism); maritime heritage; subcultures, governance and legal aspects; literary arts and oral history; visual arts, crafts and creative industry and performing arts and festivals.
A United Nations Educational, Scientific & Cultural Organization (UNESCO) endorsed facilitator has provided guidance to the Steering Committee, helping to identify gaps in representation and support the Ministry of Culture in the process of drafting the policy and plan. In early June 2016 the facilitator conducted a workshop with the Steering Committee and a cross section of stakeholder (eg. cultural institutions, cultural advocates and animators, various government departments) to gain further insight into the cultural landscape of the Cayman Islands. Public feedback was also been sought though the form of a public survey, open house, and focus groups.
Using the information gathered by the Steering Committee focus groups and feedback from stakeholders and the public, the Ministry has created the final policy, which can be viewed in its entirety below. The policy and plan will span over a 10-year period, from 2017 to 2027.
The Ministry of Health and Culture recognises that an overarching, guiding policy and strategic plan must be developed to outline and undertake the national vision, goals, and objectives required to strengthen the systems, organisations and animators of the culture and heritage fields and to underscore the critical importance of culture and heritage to the Cayman Islands.
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