(CMR) The Deputy Chair of the Business Staffing Plan Board has been called into disrepute after at least one of her 12 companies has been found to be in breach of the immigration law. Ironically, the owner has also worked as the HR manager for the Immigration Department for several years.
Arbutus Galley Restaurant has recently been subject to an immigration investigation that has found at least 4 of its workers working at the restaurant without a valid work permit for that business. Dawn Gina McLean-Brady is the sole director for the company in question and was appointed to the Business Staffing Plan Board under the remit of former Deputy Premier Chris Saunder.
The shocking infractions were revealed on Wednesday’s The Cold Hard Truth. Her employer, The Cayman Islands Airport Authority, immediately issued a statement sharing that:
“Prior to this show, CIAA were not aware of any issues or charges involving Mrs. Dawn McLean-Brady in her personal capacity or any other businesses where she is a Director or Shareholder. As result, management will assess the situation and discuss matters with Mrs. McLean-Brady.”
CMR understands that the breaches were discovered after a raid at the company that will ultimately result in administrative fines being levied against the company. WORC sources revealed that it is customary to levy fines for first-time offenders. However, CMR sources have shared that these infractions are nothing new, but persons were simply lucky not to have been caught previously.
An exclusive CMR source revealed that WORC enforcement officers could have found further infractions. However, upon entry to the business, they did not properly secure the location, and one of the cashiers was able to slip out the door unnoticed. One lady was caught working as a cashier, and several others at the new restaurant location off School Road were working as cook prep in the kitchen.
Another one appeared in court recently and will likely be subjected to a court fine. Her temporary work permit is held by a cleaning company; they claim she’s been working in the janitorial industry since September 2022. She has been fined $400 by the court for working illegally for someone else.
McLean-Brady has worked for the Cayman Islands government for over 10 years as the Chief Human Resources Officer for the Ministry of Finance, Tourism and Development. She is also the past president of the Business and Professional Women’s Club and president of the Cayman Islands Small Business Association.
She is well-known in the business community for working for several high-profile companies as a senior human resource manager. Her past companies include The Department of Immigration, EY, Island Heritage, and most recently, the Cayman Islands Airport Authority.
McLean-Brady is the sole director and owns the restaurant with her husband, Dwayne Brady. Questions have been raised about who was ultimately responsible for the submissions of employee work permits and how people could be employed by the company full-time without there being a work permit for them by Arbutus.
Prior to 2022, McLean-Brady had the company solely in her name. According to the Department of Commerce and Investment records, she had several “trading as” business licenses in her name alone. AGR Group of Companies was registered in May 2022 as a resident company in the Cayman Islands.
McLean-Brady and her husband are listed as the initial subscribers. As of July 2023, they have six business licenses under the AGR Group. However, the licenses do not end there. There are also another three that are held solely in her name, including a food truck business, beauty supply store and a computer repair business:
Further research revealed that she has a scooter and car rental business with two of her in-laws as shareholders. She also had Innovative Consulting but has since handed that over to her cousin.
With McLean-Brady’s decades-long experience in human resources, many are wondering how she could explain why she was not taking out the proper work permits for some of her employees. It was revealed that she plans to excuse the behavior by obtaining after-the-fact contracts claiming that those persons working for her were being subcontracted out by their companies. However, this storyline might be hard to explain as they were being paid directly by the restaurant. There was also no record of their actual employer ever paying them.
It remains to be seen if McLean-Brady will remain as Deputy Chair of the board.