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What can be done about price gouging after a hurricane? | CNS Local Life

I saw your column on dealing with looting after a hurricane, and my question is: What protections are in place to prevent any price gouging?

Auntie’s answer: Anyone making money off other people’s misery is truly reprehensible. I can understand that certain circumstances may make it unavoidable to raise prices after a natural disaster, such as the increased cost of transporting, delivering and safely storing goods. However, hiking the price tag because people have become more desperately in need of some items is shameful.

After Hurricane Ivan, when this practice did occur, a law was enacted to prevent price gouging if disaster should strike again. An official with Hazard Management Cayman Islands (HMCI) explained that the Price Gouging Control (Emergency Circumstances) Law becomes valid after a state of emergency is declared following a natural disaster.

Section 4(1) of the law says in part, “Upon and after a declaration of a state of emergency in the Islands by the Governor in accordance with the Emergency Powers Law (2006 Revision)…no person, his agent or employee shall rent or sell or offer to rent or sell at an unconscionable price any commodity…” This section also details what is meant by unconscionable.

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What can be done about price gouging after a hurricane? : CNS Local Life.

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