Minister: Term Limits Reducing Competitiveness

January 21, 2013 | 78 Comments

[Updated with video] Bermuda is in a “global war for talent” and the term limit policy is “reducing the international competitiveness of Bermuda as a place to do business,” said Minister of Home Affairs Michael Fahy.

Term limits will either be suspended for two years or entirely eliminated, and regardless of whichever option is chosen work permit holders will be required to sign a declaration confirming they understand that Bermuda law does not confer rights of permanent residence.

Hosting his first official press conference since assuming the portfolio, Minister Fahy stressed that “it is not the term limit policy that protects Bermudian jobs; it is the work permit policy that protects Bermudian jobs.”

Minister Fahy - Term Limits

“When a work permit expires the job must be advertised. If a qualified Bermudian applies for the job, the qualified Bermudian must be considered. All the term limit policy is intended to do is to remind the non-Bermudian worker that they must leave at some point,” said the Minister.

“But because the term limit policy requires that a guest worker leave after six years, or make application for an extension, a great deal of uncertainty is created that is entirely detrimental to the business environment.

“It is the Government’s view that the term limit policy is reducing the international competitiveness of Bermuda as a place to do business, and increasing the cost of doing business by requiring the replacement of qualified and experienced staff that has to leave the Island.

Minister Fahy continued: “Therefore, within the next day or two, the Ministry will release its Impact Assessment on the Elimination of Term Limits to the Work Permit stakeholder group in a bid to seek their views on the policy recommendations contained in the document.

20 minute video of the press conference is below:

“To be clear, as the Government contemplates the final term-limit policy decision, it is important to note that the Ministry has been working very closely with the Work Permit Policy Stakeholder group to finalize work permit policy amendments that were commenced under the former government.

“In this regard the government will incorporate additional “get tough” reforms that protect Bermudian jobs and encourage employer compliance with work permit policies.

“I want to assure the people of this Country that we remain sensitive to their concerns, and we will not take this decision lightly,” continued Minister Fahy.

“And no matter what direction we ultimately decide to move in – that is, suspension of the current term-limit policy for two years verses the elimination of the term limit policy entirely – work permit holders will be required to sign a declaration confirming their understanding that the work permit holder understands that Bermuda law does not confer rights of permanent residence and that the holder has no expectation of such residence.”

“It is imperative that we look at the wider picture – and the stark reality is that Bermuda is in a global war for talent,” said Minister Fahy.

Minister Fahy’s full statement follows below:

Good afternoon and thank you for joining me.

Today marks roughly four weeks since we have become Government and I must say as Minister, this has been a tremendously productive period for me.

On Friday, you will have heard the Premier, the Hon. Craig Cannonier outline our focus for your Government, for the Country and for the people.

Premier Cannonier outlined three specific focuses that Ministers must deliver on:

These mandates include:

  • Reducing government debt/spending while at the same time establishing new revenue streams;
  • Creating jobs; and
  • Reducing violent crime.

Each of these areas both directly and indirectly touch on the Ministry of Home Affairs.

As you will be aware over the past four weeks, Government Ministers have been quite busy assessing and reviewing the various aspects of their respective Portfolios.

And today, I’m pleased to share with you some of this Ministry’s plans, particularly as it relates to the Term Limit Policy. Now before I delve into it – I recognise that the mere mention of the words Term Limits and Work Permits tends to send people from all sectors of our community into a frenzied debate.

And that’s why as Minister one of my key objectives was to meet with as many stakeholder groups as possible to layout our plans and discuss the issue of term limits, while at the same token, taking the time to reinforce our commitment to getting Bermudians back to work and ensuring fair employment practices as it relates to the Bermudian workers.

Creating and safe-guarding jobs are paramount for this Government and this is the rationale for the policy consideration that will ultimately see the Term Limit Policy altered.

First, let’s debunk some of the myths that seem to be swirling around regarding term limits:

  • Term limits DO NOT create Bermudian jobs; and DO NOT protect Bermudian jobs;
  • Term limits were not put in place so that a Bermudian would be trained to do the job and take it over at the end of the non-Bermudian’s 6-year term limit;
  • Term limits were put in place because it was believed they would prevent the legitimate expectation to residency. And in fact the actual name of the Policy is “Measures to Inhibit Long-Term Residency”; AND
  • Term limits was a tool that was to be used to reinforce to guest workers that Bermuda was NOT their home and that unless they had been given permission to stay longer that they would have to leave at some point.

So, to be clear, it is not the term limit policy that protects Bermudian jobs; it is the work permit policy that protects Bermudian jobs.

When a work permit expires the job must be advertised.

If a qualified Bermudian applies for the job, the qualified Bermudian must be considered.

All the term limit policy is intended to do is to remind the non-Bermudian worker that they must leave at some point.

In fact, the data suggest that in March 2011, of the 6,817 work permits subject to term limits: 2,394 (35%) had been granted waivers, 2,386 (35%) had been granted extensions; and only 2037 (30%) were subject to the term limit of 6 years. This means that 70% of all of the work permit holders were being permitted to stay beyond the six years.

But because the term limit policy requires that a guest worker leave after six years, or make application for an extension, a great deal of uncertainty is created that is entirely detrimental to the business environment.

You will be aware that Government has proposed to suspend the current term-limit policy for two years and institute reasonable guidelines that protect Bermudian jobs while encouraging new job creation.

I think it’s important to note that previous Ministers had sought legal opinions regarding the feasibility of term limits as well as alternatives to term limits.

In fact, as far back as 2006, it was known by the then Government that the policy had absolutely no legal effect.

However today I can confirm that the Ministry is in the process of securing an updated legal opinion to determine the relevance of those secured in previous years, given the changing government.

The initial thinking is that the updated legal opinion will mirror the historical legal opinions.

That is, the Term Limit policy is not necessary as a tool to prevent long term residency claims.

Also, the policy has a significant and detrimental effect on business and is hampering attempts to attract and keep those guest workers vital to our economic success.

Requiring guest workers to leave after six years discourages many businesses from coming to Bermuda and also denies companies the opportunity to retain experienced people with specialized local knowledge who have proven to be a good business fit, and who have integrated into the social fabric of the Island, a process that often accrues with longer term guest workers.

The data suggest that Bermuda is experiencing a “Brain Drain”, yet, there is no statistical data to demonstrate that every time a guest worker leaves that the guest worker is replaced by a Bermudian.

In fact, emigration data for Bermudians and non-Bermudians alike paints an entirely different picture.

Furthermore, it is the Government’s view that the term limit policy is reducing the international competiveness of Bermuda as a place to do business, and increasing the cost of doing business by requiring the replacement of qualified and experienced staff that has to leave the Island.

Therefore, within the next day or two, the Ministry will release its Impact Assessment on the Elimination of Term Limits to the Work Permit stakeholder group in a bid to seek their views on the policy recommendations contained in the document.

We will also seek their views on the policy alternatives, that is, a suspension of the current term-limit policy for two years verses the elimination of the term limit policy entirely.

These views will assist with policy refinement and the decision-making process.

To be clear, as the Government contemplates the final term-limit policy decision, it is important to note that the Ministry has been working very closely with the Work Permit Policy Stakeholder group to finalize work permit policy amendments that were commenced under the former government.

In this regard the government will incorporate additional “get tough” reforms that protect Bermudian jobs and encourage employer compliance with work permit policies.

Finally, this Government recognises that today’s announcement will likely fuel the current debate regarding term limits and work permits – and in a healthy democracy such as ours, we welcome those discussions.

But I want to assure the people of this Country that we remain sensitive to their concerns, and we will not take this decision lightly.

Government is ever mindful of the legitimate needs and expectations of Bermudians – those who are Bermudian by birth and those who have already become Bermudian by grant.

But unless we have a major swelling in birthrates, Bermuda will never supply enough Bermudians to satisfy the job market.

In order for Bermuda’s economy to thrive, there will be a need for guest workers into the foreseeable future.

To allay any concerns, the public and our stakeholders can be assured that the normal work permit policies and procedures will continue to apply.

The employer will continue to be required to advertise the position and hire qualified Bermudians where identified.

And no matter what direction we ultimately decide to move in – that is, suspension of the current term-limit policy for two years verses the elimination of the term limit policy entirely – work permit holders will be required to sign a declaration confirming their understanding that the work permit holder understands that Bermuda law does not confer rights of permanent residence and that the holder has no expectation of such residence.

Therefore the issue of legitimate expectation to residency will adequately addressed.

It is imperative that we look at the wider picture – and the stark reality is that Bermuda is in a global war for talent.

Even as jurisdictions are facing recession, downsizing and layoffs, competition to reinvent and retain top talent remains relevant and fierce.

Bermuda’s preparation for long-term prosperity remains essential.

And in that vein, this Ministry will continue to focus on development strategies to prepare our next generation of Bermudian workers with the necessary skills and education to take advantage of an increasing sophisticated job market.

We see this policy shift as part of our overall plan which seeks to strengthen and rebuild our economy and getting us back onto the path of prosperity – for all.

Thank you.

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Comments (78)

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  1. Amazed says:

    I note with interest that Cayman suspended their policy but did not eliminate it.

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    • Y-Gurl says:

      And thats where a lot of X-Bermuda companies re located to

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      • windwater says:

        Which is why we need to drop term limits all together. This is a must for the island. Minister Fahy got this one right.

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        • Baltic Fury says:

          Spot on. As an expat in IB, many of my friends and colleagues have left because of the uncertainty. How do you start a family or plan for the future when you can get sent home? Suspension of limits is no different. Bermuda has to end term limits now, protectionism is not the answer.

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          • Curious says:

            That's the idea! There is no uncertainty about it, after your time is up you leave. Simple.
            We only have so much space here on our beloved island. I have no problem with the dropping of term limits, but in return don't expect to be offered Bermuda Status as a result of you working here for 15 years, even if your family is born and raised here.

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            • Grubster says:

              Not sure expats expect Bermuda status and I don't know how many would want it. However, your argument about space isn't credible; term limit is up for one employee, they leave, and just get another expat in

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              • Family Man says:

                Assuming the job doesn't leave with the employee.

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                • Soultrain says:

                  Thank you Glubster for educating the uneducated. The only foreigners who really wanna over stay or live forever on this very small and beautiful island are the non progressive dudes who the local females without self confidence, travel oversees to marry. Most expacts here are very educated andproductive people who can make it anywhere in the world. If all expats pack up and leave this place, it will become desolate and broke. So all you xenophobic people who loves to say foreigners should go back home, you better get appreciative and take your heads our your rear.

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                • Tommy Chong says:

                  The only reason jobs leave with employees is because operation cost of the job here is too expensive & nothing to do with term limits. Money making is money making & there is no love lost when an employer can bring in another professional to replace the first. Like Minister Fahy so graciously put his foot in his mouth saying, “while most guest workers stay beyond six years, term limits don't protect local jobs or prevent long-term residency claims” Now he wants to either suspend or do away with something he alluded to not being enforced in the first place. I must be careful next time where I put a X.

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                  • Loquatz says:

                    Not true. Money is invested in developing employees to fill a role. Rather than lose the employee, the role is moved.
                    Many of those jobs have gone to Dublin and Switzerland ... whose costs are not that far off Bermuda's.

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                    • Tommy Chong says:

                      “Not true. Money is invested in developing employees to fill a role.”

                      So, are you stating that when an foreign employee is hired they are not capable of fulfilling the the role they were specifically hired for in the first place? I'll buy that on the condition that an employee is a non IB worker that so much money & time has been put into to develop. In those cases you are just proving my point below to poster Frank that non IB employers hire expats who must be trained over Bermudians who could have been trained in the same fashion. As for IB doing this you'll have no sale off of me. IB is not going to hire someone wet behind the ears to do a job that starts at $40,000 plus a year. Besides f they did just the same as non IB employers they are lying to immigration about the experience level they need from an employee which I believe many non IB employers do but not so sure a multimillion dollar company would go above the law to do.

                      In regards to your the grass is greener in dublin & switzerland knowing what I know I will have to put my wellies on for that one. Dublin & switzerland have extremely strict policies compared to ours. Both cater towards EU citizens before any other Nationality in the world. Those with the Bermudians are xenophobic pipe should put my previous sentence in it light it up & take a puff. In switzerland construction, hospitality, cleaning & security services are a few of the jobs that cannot get a permit that exceeds 9 years & permits are only given for any profession if no local equivalent worker (Swiss national or foreigner already in the Swiss labour market) is available to fill the position. Also there are a limited number of permits given a year for certain jobs in switzerland & once exhausted no more can be given. Yes different to Bermuda in switzerland some can get settlement permits but those are only given to those who have university degree required jobs not all permit holders. In Dublin work permits are available for occupations with an annual salary of €30,000 or more. Permits for jobs with an annual salary below €30,000 will only be considered in exceptional cases. Then there are those jobs that work permits are not given for at all by a new law created in 2009. Those jobs that have a ban on permits are as listed.

                      Clerical and administrative staff
                      General operatives and labourers
                      Operator and production staff
                      Retail sales staff, sales representatives and supervisory or specialist sales staff
                      Drivers - from 1 June 2009 this includes HGV drivers
                      Nursery/crèche workers, child minders/nannies
                      Hotel, tourism and catering staff except chefs
                      The following craft workers and apprentice/trainee craft workers: bookbinders, bricklayers, cabinet makers, carpenters/joiners, carton makers, fitters - construction plant, electricians, instrumentation craftspeople, fitters, tilers - floor/wall, mechanics - heavy vehicles, instrumentation craftspersons, metal fabricators, mechanics - motor, originators, painters and decorators, plumbers, printers, engineers - refrigeration, sheet metal workers, tool makers, vehicle body repairers, machinists - wood, plasterers and welders
                      Domestic workers including carers in the home and childminders (for work permit applications received on or after 1 June 2009)
                      Work riders - horseracing - (for work permit applications received on or after 1 June 2009)

                      So the grass is not greener but if minister fahy wants to take the Dublin laws as a map of where to go with permits that's fine with me.

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              • Curious says:

                They get status, they have two kids. Thats four more people. Their kids get married and have two kids each. Now we are upto ten people within two generations. Their kids get married and have two kids each. Say the two original parents pass away and you are upto 20 people.
                Rinse, wash and repeat over 100 original expats you gave status to. 2000 people, or 3% of the current population.
                Bermuda has 20,000 expats currently? If even a quarter of them were allowed to pursue Bermuda status within three generations you could have another 10,000 people here. Add that to our current population and we have 70,000 people here? How is that going to exacerbate housing, medical and other infrastructure issues that we have?

                Just because someone has an opinion that is different from yours doesnt imply they are uneducated or xenophobic.
                There are other ways to increase our competitiveness and economic situation other then selling out Bermuda.

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                • windwater says:

                  " The only problem is that sometimes companies may write the job descriptions with higher requirements than needed purposely to keep the expat employed. This is not fair and should be dealt with. After x amount of renewals or years, the work permit is only granted if a local Bermudian will be trained as part of the job contract. Simple solution… "

                  I wrote this on a another reply this would be the solution to the problem you mention.

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                • windwater says:

                  When the population is increased we just need to find a real solution to housing the expats. Preferably in the City of Hamilton with rental leases. If local Bermudians rent their homes out like they did in the past, inflation will take off again and rent prices will increase causing inflation.

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                  • Tommy Chong says:

                    John Swan already has housing available in Hamilton but most expats don't rent them because of the high expense so they remain empty. There are also local Bermudians with empty real estate because landlords will not reduce the rent. Minister Fahy in the same style as ex-minister Minors has skirted around the real issue that has caused IB to move on which is high operational costs. This high cost kills international businesses because they must pay expensive office space, furniture rent, electricity, insurance & much more which all take away the attractiveness of tax exemption. Plus there are top employees who have their rent & transportation paid for by the company which is far from cheap. Cayman has made rent & electricity in their business district a heck of a lot cheaper than ours & we have lost companies because of this. If the long established landlords of Hamilton will not work with the island on dropping their rent price along with sticky fingered tyrant BELCO share holders than doing away with term limits won't do jack.

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    • frank says:

      so we just want people to be able to come here steal are jobs and stay for ever sounds like the old ubp.no sh====t if are locals can't work what do you think will happen .when i vacationed in jamaica my waiter was jamaican and so were all the staff at my hotel.term limits to be suspended for key staff only we give these companies enough breaks

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      • Tommy Chong says:

        Actually UBP had term limits also the difference is they look at it intelligently not like this half wit minister is doing. Under UBP term limits were enforced more when it came to waiters, construction labors, landscapers, retail sales people & the likes of those businesses in which they knew a Bermudian straight out of high school who couldn't afford further education or didn't want to further their education could pick up easily with a little guidance. This is why the majority Bermudians had a job under UBP & Bermuda was successful. Under PLP even with all the term limit preaching this party did there were more permits approved than ever before in the history of Bermuda. The problem with the PLP is their intentions or at the perceived ones did not fit in with what their friends & family that are employers wanted. Since most of the friends & family of the PLP were not owners of international businesses the permit hookups didn't flow that far upstream hence the reason why some restaurants, construction companies & other companies with PLP connections have done well over the past years while IB has not here.

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  2. Amazed says:

    The OBA have continually stated that over 90% of the requested extensions were granted and therefore this indicated that the policy was not needed. If that is the case then exactly how has there been a “reducing the international competitiveness of Bermuda as a place to do business,” ?

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    • Loquatz says:

      Uncertainty. In the event of an extension, it was unlikely that further extensions would be granted ... therefore the company needed to start making other plans.

      And once that ball starts rolling, the cost and complexity of rolling jobs out of Bermuda drops considerably for the company.

      And once that senior and middle management is not here, then it goes without saying that additional job growth will occur in their new location ... not here.

      I know, I've lived through it.

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      • Grubster says:

        I've also lived through the "is the expat going to be given another permit" nightmare, and it's not pleasant knowing that if immigration continues to play hard ball, then the company will move functions elsewhere, and there will be a loss of jobs here in Bermuda. Let's not forget the rents expats are paying, school fees, grocery bills etc.

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    • Sandgrownan says:

      Because those exempted require support personel.

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    • C.B.A. says:

      It doesn't make us look competitive, at all. If you're shopping around for places to set up a company, would you go with the one with a law that limits time? Things like this make me laugh...do you want the chance for our Island to flourish as it once did?

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      • windwater says:

        Exactly drop term limits all together. More companies doing business in Bermuda equals more jobs for Bermudians. Too bad the PLP didn't understand this concept.

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      • OnlyThe Truth says:

        But Bermuda florished under term limit policies that were tighter than whats in place now. Key employees are granted 10 years max vs 6 years max pre 2008 when Bermuda's economic activity was at its peak. The suggestion that removing term limits will make Bermuda more attractive is simply idiotic. And to suggest that current term limit policies have had a material impact toward the percieved "exodus" of expats is equally idiotic.

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    • Mad Dawg says:

      If 90% of extensions are granted and the limits aren't needed, what good are limits? It looks to me like there is an obvious diwnside to them but no upside.

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      • windwater says:

        What is the downside of Bermuda becoming more appealing as a place to do business? The more companies that move their operations here creates jobs for Bermudians. This is not rocket science. Bermudians are already protected by the work permits.

        The only problem is that sometimes companies may write the job descriptions with higher requirements than needed purposely to keep the expat employed. This is not fair and should be dealt with. After x amount of renewals or years, the work permit is only granted if a local Bermudian will be trained as part of the job contract. Simple solution...

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  3. The Kid says:

    Bravo Minister please move quickly and decisively. We need the signal that Guest Workers are wanted in Bermuda

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    • Truth (Original) says:

      ..and needed.

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    • OnlyThe Truth says:

      Guest workers in Bermuda seem quite content here. This is evident during Friday happy hours, sporting events, Xmas on Elbow Beach etc etc.. What exactly is it that has you convinced guest workers do not feel comfortable here. The majority of guest workers that left the island did so because of an unprecedented ecomomic downturn that forced companies to downsize and capitalize on the efficiencies of globalization - like shipping jobs to India. Not because of "uncertainty" on term limits or some big bad imaginary bully who made them feel unwelcomed. If you believe that your in la la land.

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  4. Bobmarlin says:

    Well done Minister Fahy.
    Scrap those term limits.We have work permits which work well to ensure Bermudians have preference in the work arena.The PLP were unfriendly to expats.Roll out the red carpet before all is lost.
    PLP your damaging policies will be no more.OBA keep up the good work and hopefully you will get Bermuda back to work! All the best!

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  5. swing voter says:

    I'm all for this move only if the immigration department get off their lazy azzes and carefully screen each and every blue collar non executive, non IB job applicant....while young unskilled Bermudians remain sidelined, I'm really tired of seeing the easy jobs truck drivers, waiters, dishwashers, and other labor intensive jobs going to expats when there are 10,000 locals that need employment. Yeah let the IB executives have his extra staff here.

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  6. Concerned says:

    Finally decisions that benefit Bermuda. I know some Jamaican and Portuguese construction workers that has their permits renewed and was here already 9 years. The policy did not work, and at times when it was enforced, it was done in a harsh way. Now a work permit can be signed with the understanding that they will never be Bermudian, no matter how long they are here. The other benefit is that it the employer has a good worker, and there is no qualified Bermuda, he knows that he would not be training another foriegn employee only to posibly loose him/her in one or three years depending the renewal date.

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    • dreka says:

      Yup. And once Bermudians become truly skilled and qualified, they can properly compete on the world stage and this work permit debacle won't be as big an issue as it is now.

      For too long, Bermudians have had their heads in the sand and haven't been looking at where the world as a whole is going. For example, before sushi was big in Bermuda we should have been training Bermudians to be sushi chefs.

      We often only react after change occurs and rarely have the foresight to react before it occurs.

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      • Tommy Chong says:

        YOU'RE A FOOL! All the sushi taste like crap & is overpriced here compared to places where REAL JAPANESE CHEFS in other countries prepare it. Beside the majority of the sushi chefs here were trained here by the first chef the employer brought in & don't even have a culinary degree to wipe there backsides with. The only impressive & REAL sushi place here was The Mikado but you probably wouldn't know about that.

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    • Tommy Chong says:

      The policy did not work the majority of time because it was not enforced the majority of times. Now you want to applaud an idea that rewards those employers & immigration officers who disregarded the policy by allowing them to hire as many foreigners as the want for as long as they want without any real regard to Bermudian workers. They teared the back end out when it was their what will happen without it. Minister Fahy first step should have been to take measures that enforce the proper permit process but instead went with what makes the big money maker employers happy. Go figure! No wander why PLP supporters saw the OBA as the rich man's party not the peoples party. Damn! I should have voted for an independent then my conscience would have been clear. Just like PLP the OBA is all about friends & family. I bet the premiers business partner loves Fahy's decision now they can have expats BUZZ around working in all their shops while more Bermudians become out of work.

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  7. Quote We Dont Care What You Think says:

    We dont care what you think!!!!!

    quote, Col Dvid Burch, Derrick and I believe that even Alex Scott accidentally pressed Reply All on his blackberry once in a message about "i only recognise people who look like me"

    OBA times now, open the doors and let our foreign bRetheren return to spend money at Lindo's and import a Nanny

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    • OnlyThe Truth says:

      Wonder if you'll be singing that same tune when the OBA makes moves to let your foreign Bretheren buy up real estate and business interests at a rate that your local Bretheren can not keep up with?

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  8. Brass Tax says:

    How is this different? Someone comes to Bermuda with whatever their talent or skill is and offer it to Bermuda. At the end of the day, whether 3yrs or 12yrs you still want to be in a position to say pack your bags. Your family's bags as well and get out, we don't care where you go or how you go just leave. Essentially having your cake and eating it too. Bermudians take job and relocate all over the world, don't like Britian but can't wait to have their passport. You are indeed a unique people.

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    • Bermuda Cat says:

      @Brass Tax

      I feel the need to let you know that it's not just a benefit to this island when expats come to Bermuda. It benefits them, and their families. You are focusing on the benefit of country, but you and I know these people came here to make money for themselves. I am sure when the people decided to move here knew the rules, so who is actually trying to have their cake and eat it too. You knew at somepoint you would have to leave, so why are people acting like they have been done wrong. Be thankful you had the opportunity to come to this island, make good money, and when your time is done, pack up and leave. It happens all around the world, and it has to be monitored even closer on small islands like Bermuda.

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      • Tommy Chong says:

        AMEN!!!!

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        • Crab Mentality says:

          You talk as if you know everything. Why don't you run for office instead of being a faceless coward who is "all talk"? And by the way, don't get the notion that I am against you as I think we are both on the same page!

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          • Tommy Chong says:

            Faceless Coward?!?!!?! UM, unless your given name is Crab & surname Mentality I do believe you are the pot calling the kettle black.

            I'll be human enough to admit I don't know everything but I do know many of the goings on in Bermuda but sadly knowing doesn't do much to solve a problem perpetrated by big wig business owners who have politicians backing them on in both parties. Running for office won't do much in this type of scenario when one would have to run in one of the only two parties in Bermuda to be really heard. Did anyone remember what was said by the independents? I doubt it. Once in one of the parties & heard what next? Get slandered by your own team like other politicians have already because your comrades are business partners with the ones you speak out against. This will not carry a voice very far.

            I post in hopes that maybe a local who has been shafted out of work will read & realize there are more than them who know. Maybe they will feel free to voice on here & wherever else also making the voice louder. It's sad but I must keep my occupations & my inner voice separate with a screen name so as to protect the bread & butter I earn. I know others who must do the same & are worse off then me because their occupation is directly threatened daily unlike me & all they can do is either take the abuse or let their family starve so they chose the abuse.

            I have tried to do my part by contacting immigration about foreigners that I knew who's permits were up but stayed on till the employer got it renewed & foreigners who came here as a tourist & got a job permit while here as tourist. I've also reported foreign workers who had less qualifications than a Bermudian I knew who applied for a job but got the job instead. In all cases I was told it would be checked into but it never was.

            The sad sad truth is just as many other governments who claim democracy ours is not for the people by the people. This is why so much has gone wrong on this island & why many have failed their young. When you have nationals who can't find a steady job so to make ends meet must work shifts that only pay enough to barely make ends meet this is the society that is created. It is something that happened to America long ago & now it is happening to us.

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  9. M.P.Mountbatten JP says:

    Does America have term limits ?

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    • Tooth Fairy says:

      Ask Hamish

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    • Loquatz says:

      No. After x years of residency you are eligible for a green card.

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      • Tommy Chong says:

        You have to get a visa & a work permit or have a substantial reason like refugee status to reside in the U.S.A. & that's not easy especially if you are from south of the boarder. Some Central & South Americans can't even get a visa for a stopover flight in America.

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      • windwater says:

        To get a work permit H1B Visa is extremely hard unless you are extremely skilled and have advanced degrees or qualifications.

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    • Mad Dawg says:

      No. In fact a green card entitles you to settle there.

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    • Tommy Chong says:

      Does America have overpopulation, mass amounts of unemployment, poverty, wellfare states & more illegal immigrants than they can shake a green card at?

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  10. welldone says:

    Here they go! Ready to give away the country.

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    • Tooth Fairy says:

      Nothing left to give away???? In fact there isn't anything left to borrow. - The former government took care of that problem.

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    • swing voter says:

      hahahha I think you would give away a boat that was leaking and about to sink, or would you be the good captain that goes down with the ship....idiot

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  11. Pilot001 says:

    This is crap! IB have no interest in hiring Bermudians. OBA talk out of both sides of their mouths.

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    • Tooth Fairy says:

      They don't??? Hmmm, In my graduating year - 22 of the graduating students went on to work in IB. In fact 6 got scholarships from IB companies and many of them REQUIRED that they come back to work for those same companies tha gave them scholarships!

      Perhaps you need to change your attitude and outlook and work on that resume and maybe someday you too can get a job there. Why would they welcome you into their place of work if you don't welcome them?

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      • Tooth Fairy says:

        In Fact her is a quote from this Bermudian:

        “First and foremost, you have to want it. You have to engage in your own progression. I’ve said it a number of times — you have to be an advocate for yourself and you have to make sure that you’re reaching out to your peers and to your potential mentors for engagement and conversation and lunch and try and understand what their view is on how to progress and what they think you should be doing or the weaknesses that you have that you need to work on. You have to be prepared for some frank conversations about yourself and be able to take on board constructive criticism. Fundamentally, if you can’t do that, then I think you’re going to have a problem progressing — regardless of which industry that you’re in.”

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    • Like duh says:

      IB is not the only industry impacted by term limits policy. You should try talking to Bermudian business owners who have faced added costs and inconvenience due to term limits. But to your comment...I challenge you to speak to any number of Bermudians employed in IB, making healthy salaries, all benefits paid, top class training and international exposure at their fingertips, and see if they agree that IB has no interest in hiring Bermudians. Look at all of the scholarships our young people are offered by these companies every single year. When we get it right as a country, these companies will, hopefully, reinvest in their Bermuda operations, and place more staff on the island. And what happens next? More people grocery shopping. More people renting apartments and homes from Bermudians. More people dining at our restaurants. More relatives visiting their family members in Bermuda. A more diverse educational environment for our children. And more talent working right here on our tiny island, equating to more opportunities for Bermudians ( who choose to take the initiative), to learn from the best of the best. This is not a game, this is our future. We must be competitive if we are to remain a key player in this industry. I disagree with you completely. This is not crap. We need to show the world that Bermuda is open for business. This is a step in the right direction.

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    • Sandgrownan says:

      Can you walk and breathe at the same time?

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  12. nofahy says:

    Fahy needs to go. Allowing his wife to be appointed to a government board was a dumb move. I voted OBA and seeing their true colours this soon is extremely dissapointing. Friends and family part two...joy. Is he/she really worth it OBA? You worked so hard and are throwing it away already. Politicians being politicians. They are all cut from the same cloth :(

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  13. Yng Black Mind says:

    What I believe is going on, there is fear - - fear of the unknown. That's for both those companies that want to invest here and for those Bermudians who want to continue to be able to work in their own country.

    I understand the concept of term limits and why the previous government believed in them. I also understand why Minister Fahy and the new government want to do away with them - - and I am torn between both ideals.

    As a nationalist, I see the need to secure jobs and opportunities for Bermudians and in some cases that is not happening. Just because expats workers are here, that doesn't equate to Bermudians working in IB - or feeding off the benefits of IB. A statement above really bothered me - - "while young unskilled Bermudians remain sidelined, I’m really tired of seeing the easy jobs truck drivers, waiters, dishwashers, and other labor intensive jobs going to expats when there are 10,000 locals that need employment." I understand the point but my question is why do Bermudians need to cover these types of jobs? Why is IB not trying to engage Bermudians for the top paying jobs in their companies (on a regular)? Before people attack me, I am well aware that IB companies offer some of our young Bermudians scholarships, internships, and the like - - and I believe that's awesome, I do! I just ask the question because that's how some in our community feel about IB - - that is just for an elite few, thus they are not involved.

    However, I do understand that IB is vital to our country and their inclusion is necessary and welcomed. The previous government did not put out the welcome mat and that has cost us as a nation. We need to be seen to be welcoming to the IB community as their investment in our economy will benefit all of us.

    I applaud the Minister for tackling this problem head on - - I just hope that the policies and procedures that are put in place do not put Bermudians and Bermuda at a disadvantage for the sake of pandering to the IB companies. My country is not a "street walker" - - let's not treat her like one.

    Yng Black Mind
    (those who know understand)

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    • AlexisWright says:

      "Why is IB not trying to engage Bermudians for the top paying jobs in their companies (on a regular)?" - why do you feel it is IB's job to engage Bermudians? Shouldn't it be the other way around?

      "I just ask the question because that’s how some in our community feel about IB – - that is just for an elite few, thus they are not involved." - don't get me wrong but working in IB is, for the most part, not for everybody. When talent is bought in from all over the world you can't have Joe Schmo working just because he is Bermudian and feels entitled to do so. With that being said there are numerous functions within an IB company that one doesn't have to be 'elite' to be involved with. I think a common misconception is that IB-companies are not welcoming to Bermudians... this is flat-out wrong. I think you will find many (most?) like having an internationally diverse workforce. And when Bermudians are ready to be promoted, they will be.

      "I just hope that the policies and procedures that are put in place do not put Bermudians and Bermuda at a disadvantage for the sake of pandering to the IB companies." - when policies are put in place that benefit IB-companies Bermuda will never be put at a disadvantage. And when IB accounts for almost all of our economy we can pander to them all day long...

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      • Yng Black Mind says:

        @Alexis:

        I do not disagree with you - - my post was more of a position paper to highlight how some may feel about the topic.

        However, the balance of the "need" and "want" from IB companies has to be set and maintained.

        Yng Black Mind

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    • bermyluv says:

      Education is the key to opportunity. One cannot expect IB to give him or her something without adequate preparation. Too many of Bermuda's young people fail to recognize that preparation for a job begins long before the day you start looking for or applying for it. In grade school, middle school and high school people set themselves on their life's trajectory. If one shoots too low, chances are that he or she may not get the chance to reload.

      I presently work in IB, and I know that they are willing to help. But these companies want to be associated with success and not failure. So often times it seems that they help those who need it the least, those who are already on the path to success. They are not in the business of getting down in the mud to help us out of our own mess. They will not create programs for us. But if we are able to come up with good programs that benefit our community, that show great promise and success for our young people, the companies will readily jump on board to assist financially. It's up to us to make it happen. It has always been up to us and it always will be.

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  14. Bermudian says:

    My spirit grieves each time i read a comment from my countrymen. Can a people be so arrogant, hateful and dopey!!! sigh. I applaud the effort of the Bermudians who purposed in their hearts to stay far away from the xenophobic and closed-minded few, pay attention in school and continue to aid in making their country proud. bermuda is what it is now because of expats. Most of the companies are expat owned and a vast majority of the workforce here are foreigners. Why the hell you all so stupid to keep hating on hard working and decent foreigners. Can you imagine if all the expat Police officers, doctors, cleaners, house keepers and nurses should pack up and leave bermuda? I only mention those groups because it would be so over bearing to even add the others to my thought. sigh. We are an ungrateful set of people and will be sorry for being so rude and disrespectful to these people who sacrifice leaving their families to serve our country.

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  15. jt says:

    Open our doors.

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  16. Bermyman says:

    This is not about denying Bermudians opportunities. It is about providing job security and stability for key expatriot executive employees. There are other jurisdictions that offer the same benefits to offshore business. The market and the business resides where the intellectual capital is happy to live and work. If you don't have the people, you don't have the market. Bermuda lost a big share of the market due to immigration, anyone who works in insurance/reinsurance knows this. An international worker that comes here with their family touches every singe aspect of our economy financially. They indirectly provide jobs in every facet of the economic rung. We must listen to their needs and wants and make this a desirable place to live and work. Not only that we must be the number 1 offshore business destination. If you fail to understand this then you really do fail to understand how our current economy works.

    At present and in future there is every opportunity afforded qualified and professional Bermudians. Not only that, there will be more opportunity the more executives decide to set-up shop or keep their operations on the island. At present, immigration is the biggest barrier to Bermuda growing it's economy.

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  17. Speak in fine print, but hear me in bold says:

    Lest we forget the history surrounding Tucker's Town. Lest we forget that the current residents of Tucker's Town do not resemble the original residents of that area. Research the motives and strategy that was used to remove the original residents of Tucker's Town. Now compare that piece of history to present day. Scarily similar. Especially realizing that the goal for Tucker's Town was to 'push' and 'move out' and 'eliminate' the presence of locals in that area for the sake of replacing those locals with wealthy foreign investors and businesses.

    Present day...2013...Tucker's Town scenario now applies to ALL of Bermuda, not just one area. Same motives as Tucker's Town...but just not as obvious...instead disguised as 'term limit policies' and 'immigration policies'. Goal: to push, move out and eliminate the presence of locals in the Bermuda business arena.

    Prediction or Reality?:

    ----> Bermuda sells her soul and sells out her people for the sake of appealing to and keeping foreign investors, IB, and tourist/visitors.

    ----> Bermuda no longer resembles 'Bermuda'. Local workers are replaced by foreign workers who sell the 'Bermuda' product.

    ----> the primary focus of Bermuda is to solicit and keep more money and investors on the island, not addressing social and community issues.

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    • AlexisWright says:

      Delusional much? I love me a good conspirac theory... Pray tell, what strategies were used to remove the original residents of Tucker's Town? And how exactly does the removal of term limits push, move out, and eliminate the presence of locals in the business arena? Hint: it doesn't.

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    • Bermyman says:

      So what your saying is that we should have Bermudian business that is run and invested in entirely by Bermudians and sells to only Bermudians. Why do we even need USD in Bermuda, we should have our own currency that is worthless anywhere else but Bermuda. Heck we could sell reinsurance to fellow Bermudians!

      Since Bermuda's inception this island has been a transient environment for commerce and people who originated as foreign workers. Without such a diverse and rich history in trade that is paired with foreign investment we would probably have an economy less or similar to Haiti. There is no such thing as a Native in Bermuda, everyone at some point came from somewhere else. But our economy relies of foreign investment, it is not self sustaining.

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    • jt says:

      Arms wide open - let them come.

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  18. BDA Girl says:

    I agree with the Minister. This is the step in the right direction. If the term limit policy is NOT altered/scrapped etc. this will only contribute to our woes. What sense does it make to have a policy when there are fewer and fewer individuals to whom the policy will apply to? Lets make it know we are open for business and give people some certainty. Times change, lets change with the times.

    In saying the above, I recognise that there are those who do not care whether or not they hire/train Bermudians and who advertise for positions knowning full well who they will hire and use the Bermudian "lack of skills/experience" as their excuse. Sometimes that is the case, sometimes it is not. All efforts should be made moving forward to ensure the latter does not happen as best as is possible.

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  19. funny bone says:

    Michael you are spot on.................this is the only way will get people to invest in Bermuda .............instead of the common Bermudian footing the bill for borrowing and it will create work for all Berumudians ................

    Don't worry about the Nay Sayers they will dam you if you do or dam you if you don't ............

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  20. Serious Though says:

    The only way both sides will understand why Bermuda need IB, is the govt to show Bermudians the $$$$$$ that IB bring to the country..

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