Videos: Dignitaries Arriving & Throne Speech

November 5, 2011

While the Throne Speech delivered yesterday [Nov.4] by Governor Sir Richard Gozney was mainly an economic blueprint for drawing new businesses to the island and putting Bermudians back to work, Government also said it would be tackling social issues in the coming year.

The Government’s legislative agenda for 2012, the Throne Speech outlined plans to end age discrimination by amending the the Human Rights Act. And Government also intends to introduce a new Equality Act which could ban discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation.

At a press conference following the reading of the Throne Speech, Premier Paula Cox said Government intended to tackle some “thorny issues” in the coming months, including the possibility of introducing a new National Youth Service as an alternative for those conscripts opposed to military service in the Bermuda Regiment.

“As a Government and as a country we should also be prepared to have the crucial conversations even when they are on thorny issues; that is what 21st century Governments do,” said the Premier. “Therefore we intend to:

  • Review the Defence Act to ensure that it is still relevant in a 21st century Bermuda;
  • Ensure that incarceration is not the first choice for dealing with our youth who may choosing the wrong path;
  • Decide whether gaming has a role in our tourism product.
  • Seek to address issues of inequality and going to further advance age discrimination;
  • Improve the health insurance system, especially removing the need for up-front payments to doctors
  • Ensure that support is given to those most in need.

“These issues will garner a great deal of discussion and, possibly, angst in some quarters, but if we are to progress as a country, there cannot be any ‘no-go’ subjects.”

You can read the full text of the Throne speech here, the highlights here, view coverage of the Premier’s press conference here, view our first photo gallery here and second photo gallery here.

Parliamentarians arrive, and are formally introduced:

Lady Gozney arrives via horse and carriage:

Bermuda Regiment marches in:

Informal arrival of various dignitaries, Part #1:

Informal arrival of various dignitaries, Part #2:

Governor reads the Throne Speech, Part #1:

Governor reads the Throne Speech, Part #2:

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