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Vision 2025: Reply the 2015 Budget

Deputy Leader David Burt, delivered the PLP's economic vision for the future "Vision 2025" during today's Reply to the 2015/16 Budget. Read the full response here.

PLP Deputy Leader and Shadow Minister of Finance David Burt, delivered "Vision 2015" the PLP's reply to the 2015/16 Budget in Parliament on Friday, February 27, 2015. In that response he outlined the PLP's economic vision for the future and steps that can be taken to realise the goal of a strong and diversified ecomony by 2025.  He explained how the OBA's budget cuts made the economy weaker and the how the PLP's alternate budget proposal that would make signifigant investments in education, training, and alternative energy would help Bermuda's economy grow. 

The full document is available for download here. If you have feedback, MP David Burt can be contacted on dburt@plp.bm

 

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Statement by Shadow Education Minister Lovita Foggo

As Junior Minister of Education she should be a standard bearer. 


As a former educator I am dismayed by the recent actions of OBA MP and
Junior  Minister of Education, Leah Scott, where she denied plagiarism
in her recent 'Letter to the Editor'.

When comparing an op-ed published on 'hellobeautiful.com' back in 2010
to the letter the Junior Minister submitted last week, the contents
were strikingly similar. This has led to accusations  of plagiarism in
the public domain, as evidenced both on local media websites, social
media and over the airwaves. However, the OBA MP continues to deny
what appears as the obvious to many Bermudians.

An apology and admission would seem to have been the logical response;
however this not being the case has only served to further inflame the
situation.

Her subsequent attempt to qualify plagiarism by stating that she
didn’t copy "word for word" is an affront and no defense. As a member
of the local bar and the Junior Minister of Education, Ms. Scott has
fallen short.

As Junior Minister of Education she should be a standard bearer. Any
statement implying that it is okay to take someone else's work as long
as you don't copy "word for word" is certainly not a practice accepted
in academia at any level; primary, secondary nor tertiary. The usually
result to such an action is a zero allocation or the grade 'F'.

I would suggest that MP Scott's behaviour would warrant like
consequences especially since this is compounded by no admission or
expression of apology. How would a student deem this behaviour? Does
she pass the test? Would an honour student retain such a title if she
was found to have plagiarized?  Should the Junior Minister expect to
retain her title?

In order to promote excellence in our school system we must lead by
example and be a testament to the behaviour we expect of our students.
I would hope that after the strong negative reaction to MP Scott's
less than acceptable explanation, that she will do the honourable
thing and relinquish the title of Junior Minister for Education.

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PLP to Host Special Showings of Selma & Madea's Tough Love

We encourage you all to come out to view this historic film, and celebrate both Black History Month, and our Leader’s Birthday with us.

The Progressive Labour Party invites you to join us in a special showing of Academy Award Best Picture Nominee “Selma”.

 

Under the Distinguished Patronage of the Hon. Marc A.R. Bean, JP, MP and Mrs. Simone Smith-Bean, you are cordially invited to join us as we celebrate Black History Month, and our Party Leader’s Birthday, at a special viewing of the acclaimed civil rights themed film, “Selma”.

 

This special showing will be on Thursday, February 19, at 8:00pm at the Liberty Theatre, Union Square, Hamilton.  Tickets will be $20.00.

 

There will be a second showing for Senior Citizens and School Students on Friday, February 20,  at 10:00am.
 
There  will also be a showing of Tyler Perry's 'Madea's Tough Love" on Wednesday, February 18, at 10:00am

 

Tickets for all showings are available at PLP HQ, Alaska Hall, Court Street, Hamilton, or by calling 292-2264 and also at Liberty Theatre.

 

We encourage you all to come out to view this historic film, and celebrate both Black History Month, and our Leader’s Birthday with us.

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PLP to Host Public Meeting on the OBA Plan to Privatise the L.F. Wade International Airport


The Bermuda Progressive Labour Party will be hosting a second Public
Meeting on the OBA's privatisation of the  L.F. Wade International
Airport.

"With $1 billion dollars of future Bermuda revenue at stake, a no-bid
contract to a Canadian Company, and the loss of control of our current
and new airport for at least 30 years through privatisation, this is
an issue of national importance," said Shadow Finance Minister David
Burt. "Since our last Town Hall meeting, we have learned that the OBA
have delayed the go/no-go date for a final decision on the airport to
March 31, 2015. We have also learned that airport staff have been
informed that the OBA cannot ensure that all employees will be hired
by the new private airport contractor,” continued Shadow Minister
Burt.

Shadow Transport Minister Lawrence Scott remarked, "L.F. Wade
International is staffed nearly 100% by Bermudians, provides a major
source of revenue to the government and is our primary access point to
the world. We simply cannot permit it to be privatised for at least 30
years in what appears to be a backroom deal with no RFP that will
jeopardise Bermudian jobs."

The PLP's Town Hall Meeting on OBA's Privatisation of L.F. Wade
International Airport will be held on Tuesday, January 27th  at the
Purvis Primary School starting at 7pm. Speakers include Shadow Finance
Minister David Burt and Shadow Transport Minister Lawrence Scott.

All are welcome to hear the PLP's alternative vision for the future of
the LF Wade International Airport which will preserve Bermudian jobs
and keep Bermuda's airport in Bermuda's hands.

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Shadow Minister for Immigration ‬Walton Brown: Call for The Reefs to Withdraw Ad‬

The recent ad by The Reefs hotel represents a flawed direction in the hiring process and needs to be stopped immediately. To publish an ad seeking an employee to work without monetary compensation and for merely “room and board” is an affront to us all and is certainly not the behavior expected from one of our highest profile hotel properties, moreover, one owned b the chairman of the Bermuda Tourism Authority.

Such actions lends credence to the argument that there are employers who are actively seeking to deny Bermudians opportunities and it cannot be that The Reefs wishes to be associated with such actions.

We are calling on The Reefs to withdraw the ad immediately, apologize to the country for a clearly discriminatory ad, and begin a genuine search to fill a needed position that is not structured to deny Bermudians an equal opportunity.

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Press Conference Remarks - Shadow Minister of Finance, Mr. E. David Burt - The Bermuda Jobs Crisis

Unlike the Minister of Finance, Bermudians didn't need to hear the latest statistics to know that we are in a Jobs Crisis...

Members of the media, thank you for joining us here today. Today I am going to address the ongoing Jobs Crisis in Bermuda, which was crystalized by the latest unemployment figures which showed record unemployment in Bermuda.

Before I get to the meat of the report, let me address the lateness of this report. During the UBP and OBA time in Opposition, we heard a constant refrain of the need to be timely with statistics.  Please note we are receiving this report in January, 2015. This survey has the same methodology of the survey done in 2012, under the PLP, and that survey was released in October. There is no excuse for the delay and the OBA needs to give a better explanation than the Minister of Finance required additional validation of the statistics. The Minister of Finance cannot be that out of touch to not know that we have a Jobs Crisis here in Bermuda. The people in the Department of Statistics are professionals, and I don’t think they need their work double checked because the numbers don’t match the OBA’s story of recovery.

Unlike the Minister of Finance, Bermudians didn't need to hear the latest statistics to know that we are in a Jobs Crisis...each of us have or know someone that has been unemployed for some time, recently lost their job, is living in fear of being made redundant, has had wages slashed, hours reduced, or been forced to leave Bermuda for better opportunities elsewhere. 

Bermudians didn't need to be told that under the OBA, Bermuda now has higher unemployment than we have ever heard before, because we are living it.  

There are over 3,000 Bermudians out of work. These are Bermudians who want to be productive, who want to provide for their families...But as the Jobs Crisis continues to drag on they are losing hope. While threats of layoffs and unemployment hang over countless Bermudians, almost every working Bermudian is frustrated at their inability to keep up with the skyrocketing costs of basic necessities.

The numbers speak for themselves:

 

  • There were 511 less people working in 2014 than in 2013; a figure that pours cold water on the OBA’s continued talk of recovery.
  • The figures show that there were 3,486 people recorded as unemployed, the highest number of people unemployed ever recorded!
  • The figures show that under the OBA, Bermuda is experiencing record unemployment as the unemployment rate of 9% is higher than the 8% recorded in 2012.
  • Wages are down 3% as costs continue to rise.
  • And the black unemployment rate is triple that of the white unemployment rate.

 

Bob Richards and the OBA may dismiss unemployed Bermudians as mere statistics, and can call a black unemployment rate 3 times higher than the white unemployment rate, and I quote, “of note” - but we, in the PLP, believe that our people are Bermuda's greatest resource and that a Bermuda that works for a select few while leaving everyone else behind, is unacceptable.

Two years in to the OBA’s term – it is clear that Bermuda’s Jobs Crisis is getting worse under the OBA. The backwards thinking of the OBA that we can give tax breaks to business and the benefits will trickle down to everyday Bermudians is an idea from the past that has failed and will continue to take our country in the wrong direction.

The OBA likes to talk about incorporations, but incorporations are not what Bermuda needs, Jobs are what Bermuda needs. Bermuda needs a Jobs Plan – and it is clear the OBA do not have one!

We believe diversifying our economy should be a priority. We believe that rebuilding our economy with a long term plan for economic growth must be a priority.

We believe that comprehensive reform is needed to reduce the economic advantages of hiring non-Bermudian workers over Bermudian labour. 

The deeper meaning of these numbers is that our economy needs a wholesale overhaul. These numbers prove that the people of Bermuda require the PLP to lead the way in diversifying this economy. We must do everything we can to encourage more of our children to choose careers that provide employment that is recession proof.

Our children must, to borrow from Prof. Mincy, choose jobs that drive the economy and not just jobs that serve it.

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Constituency 34 MP Kim Wilson to Hold Job Readiness Workshop

Constituency 34 MP Kim Wilson to Hold Job Readiness Workshop
 
"Member of Parliament for Constituency # 34 Sandys South Central Kim Wilson has teamed up with the Department of Workforce Development to host a Job Readiness Workshop aimed at helping to get Bermudians back to work.

The workshop will include tips and training on developing critical job ready skills such as interviewing and resume’ writing, effective communication and other skills needed to assist participants to get “job ready.

Ms. Wilson states, ”As I canvass the area, I meet many people, both underemployed and unemployed, who are looking to better prepare and market themselves in their pursuit to secure gainful employment. With the recession that descended on the local workforce in 2008 came a much tighter job marker across every sector.  Developing and improving upon such skills will only serve to increase a persons prospects of getting employed.

MP Wilson added, "Those in attendance will gain a working knowledge of the best tools and strategies needed to maximize opportunities and promote themselves.

The Job Readiness Workshop is open to the public and will be held on Thursday, January 15, 2015, from11:00-3:00 at the Somerset Cricket Club."
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Constituency 34 MP Kim Wilson to Hold Job Readiness Workshop

Constituency 34 MP Kim Wilson to Hold Job Readiness Workshop
 
"Member of Parliament for Constituency # 34 Sandys South Central Kim Wilson has teamed up with the Department of Workforce Development to host a Job Readiness Workshop aimed at helping to get Bermudians back to work.

The workshop will include tips and training on developing critical job ready skills such as interviewing and resume’ writing, effective communication and other skills needed to assist participants to get “job ready.

Ms. Wilson states, ”As I canvass the area, I meet many people, both underemployed and unemployed, who are looking to better prepare and market themselves in their pursuit to secure gainful employment. With the recession that descended on the local workforce in 2008 came a much tighter job marker across every sector.  Developing and improving upon such skills will only serve to increase a persons prospects of getting employed.

MP Wilson added, "Those in attendance will gain a working knowledge of the best tools and strategies needed to maximize opportunities and promote themselves.

The Job Readiness Workshop is open to the public and will be held on Thursday, January 15, 2015, from11:00-3:00 at the Somerset Cricket Club."
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Bermudian Job Crisis is Getting Worse Under the OBA

There were 511 less people working in 2014 than in 2013 a figure that pours cold water on the OBA’s continued talk of recovery.

For Immediate Release
January 9, 2015

Press Statement by Shadow Finance Minister David Burt: Bermudian Job Crisis is Getting Worse Under the OBA

The figures released today crystallize the fact that the Bermudian job crisis is getting worse under the OBA. I will comment more next week when I have a chance to fully digest the numbers which were just released, however the headline figures are truly sobering. 

There were 511 less people working in 2014 than in 2013 a figure that pours cold water on the OBA’s continued talk of recovery.

The figures show that there were 3,486 people recorded as unemployed, the highest number of people unemployed ever recorded!

Finally, the figures show that under the OBA, Bermuda is experiencing record unemployment as the unemployment rate of 9% is higher than the 8% recorded in 2012.  

The headline numbers speak for themselves; falling jobs, record numbers of unemployed and the highest unemployment rate ever recorded. This report makes it clear that the trickle down policies of the OBA are not working; they have caused further job losses and record unemployment.

What Bermuda needs is a more diversified economy and a government who is looking to build an economy with ideas for the future, not a government focused on ideas from the past. 

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Statement by Shadow AG Michael Scott

The Governor has demonstrated repeatedly that he is not a friend of Bermudians or Bermuda. 

The reappointment of Rory Field is a slap in the face to not just the qualified, capable Bermudians who have been overlooked, but to everyone who believes that Bermudians should come first in jobs and opportunities in our own country. To simply roll over Mr. Field's work permit while qualified Bermudians are left in the cold is an insult to Bermudians and yet another confirmation that our country is headed in the wrong direction. 

The PLP's position is clear.  There has been a lack of openness, accountability and transparency in this process and there must be justification by the Governor why qualified Bermudians are being denied the opportunity to fill this post.  Furthermore, the following questions must be asked:

  1. The Governor has previously stated that Cindy Clarke's proposed appointment as DPP was "untenable," yet Ms Clarke has continued in her role as Deputy Director, and has done so with the highest degree of professionalism. If Ms Clarke is good enough to do the heavy lifting as Deputy Director, then why has she been denied the opportunity to fill this role?
  2. Will the Advisory Committee on Judicial and Legal Services in its advisory  role have its reputation tarnished by the Governor's decision?  

The Governor has demonstrated repeatedly that he is not a friend of Bermudians or Bermuda. The Premier's plan to appeal to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office is fruitless as the Governor takes his direction from the FCO. The Premier knows that this is nothing but a meaningless PR gesture.

For the Governor to re-appoint Mr. Field just weeks after he approved charges in the Prince Edness murder trial which were dropped within 48 hours, demonstrates that it is long past time he stepped aside, returned to his home and made way for the Bermudians who are fully capable to be DPP.

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