Minister Fahy: PRC Avenue To Status Will Stand

July 23, 2014

[Updated with PLP response] The Ministry is withdrawing the appeal in the PRC status matter and “the avenue to Bermuda status for certain PRC holders that was created by the previous government in 2001 will stand,” Minister of Home Affairs Michael Fahy said today.

The Minister said, “The question of Permanent Resident Certificate holders [PRC’s] and their place in Bermuda has been the subject of widespread public discussion since May when Bermuda’s Chief Justice issued a judgment upholding the right of certain PRC holders, under rules laid down by the previous government, to get Bermudian status.

“Since that time, the Government has considered the situation while paying close attention to public views on the issue.

“After a thorough review by the QC, and follow-on conversations between the Attorney General, me and the QC, the Ministry was advised that an appeal against the Chief Justice’s order would not succeed – advice that was in keeping with interpretations of the rights of long-term residents under the European Convention of Human Rights.

“Nevertheless, while seeking clarifications of the QC’s opinion and to keep open all possible legal options, the Government lodged an appeal with the Court of Appeal. We are now in possession of the clarifications and have again been strongly advised that any appeal would be unsuccessful. Based on this information, the Ministry has determined that there is no merit in carrying forward the appeal to the Court of Appeal. As such, we are today withdrawing the appeal.

“This means that the avenue to Bermuda status for certain PRC holders that was created by the previous government in 2001 will stand.

The Minister continued, “This decision has not been taken lightly, but it is one we take without reservation, because it is based on a clear interpretation of the law, with due regard for justice and human rights and because, in the final analysis, it is the compassionate and right thing to do.

“The people affected by the Supreme Court’s judgment of the law have been living and working with us since on or before 31st July 1989 – that is at least 25 years. Their lives are invested in Bermuda. They are committed. They have put down roots. They are friends, neighbours and colleagues who have contributed to our collective well-being in countless ways.

“And like Bermudians whom they live alongside, they are active in communities across the Island, in sport and recreation, in charity work and volunteerism; adding to the working life of the Island, using their skills and commitment to make Bermuda stronger in a world that is more challenging and competitive than ever.

The Minister’s full statement follows below:

Madam President, the question of Permanent Resident Certificate holders (“PRC’s”) and their place in Bermuda has been the subject of widespread public discussion since May when Bermuda’s Chief Justice issued a judgment upholding the right of certain PRC holders, under rules laid down by the previous government, to get Bermudian status.

Since that time, the Government has considered the situation while paying close attention to public views on the issue.

This morning I will outline the Government’s decision on the matter. In doing so, I will first provide a factual summary of how this situation came about, the reasons for our decision and then some clarifications and corrections to misinformation that has been put into the community since the Chief Justice’s ruling was made public.

Background
In October of 2012, enquiries were made to the Department of Immigration about the right to Bermudian status under Section 20B of the Bermuda Immigration and Protection Act 1956 (“the Act”), with the applicants at that time being advised that no such application procedure existed.

In spite of this advice, applications were submitted to me in my capacity as Minister of Home Affairs, responsible for immigration in June 2013 at which time they were rejected on the basis that there had been no pre-approval for Bermudian status under the Act.

This decision was overturned by the Immigration Appeal Tribunal. I subsequently appealed the tribunal’s decision in the Supreme Court in January of 2014. The Chief Justice upheld the tribunal’s decision, ruling in favour of the applicants and stating in his summation that “the decision of the IAT directing the Minister to grant the Respondents’ applications for Bermudian status is accordingly affirmed.”

In essence, the Supreme Court ruling means that the Minister responsible for Immigration, save for various circumstances as set out in the Act, must grant Bermudian status to a PRC holder if the holder

  • Was granted a PRC as a result of having been in Bermuda on or before July 31st 1989
  • Submits an application for naturalisation to become a British Overseas Territories Citizen (of Bermuda) and an application for Bermudian status under Section 20B(2)(b) of the Act, and
  • The Minister supports the naturalisation application and the Governor approves it.

This provision in the Act became active as a result of PRC legislation being passed in 2001. When the matter was brought to the attention of the Ministry in October 2012 under the previous government, nothing was done to interfere with the relevant section of the Act.

Following the Supreme Court judgment, this Government moved to resolve the situation.

We sought legal advice from the Attorney General’s Chambers as well as a prominent Queen’s Counsel in the United Kingdom on the merits of appealing the Supreme Court judgment.

After a thorough review by the QC, and follow-on conversations between the Attorney General, me and the QC, the Ministry was advised that an appeal against the Chief Justice’s order would not succeed – advice that was in keeping with interpretations of the rights of long-term residents under the European Convention of Human Rights. Nevertheless, while seeking clarifications of the QC’s opinion and to keep open all possible legal options, the Government lodged an appeal with the Court of Appeal. We are now in possession of the clarifications and have again been strongly advised that any appeal would be unsuccessful. Based on this information, the Ministry has determined that there is no merit in carrying forward the appeal to the Court of Appeal. As such, we are today withdrawing the appeal.

This means that the avenue to Bermuda status for certain PRC holders that was created by the previous government in 2001 will stand.

This decision has not been taken lightly, but it is one we take without reservation, because it is based on a clear interpretation of the law, with due regard for justice and human rights and because, in the final analysis, it is the compassionate and right thing to do.

The people affected by the Supreme Court’s judgment of the law have been living and working with us since on or before 31st July 1989 – that is at least 25 years. Their lives are invested in Bermuda. They are committed. They have put down roots. They are friends, neighbours and colleagues who have contributed to our collective well-being in countless ways. And like Bermudians whom they live alongside, they are active in communities across the Island, in sport and recreation, in charity work and volunteerism; adding to the working life of the Island, using their skills and commitment to make Bermuda stronger in a world that is more challenging and competitive than ever.

When Bermudians reflect on this decision, they should consider what Bermuda means in terms of how we live with each other and with the outside world, remembering that everyone across our history came from another place or descended from people who came from another place. Some of our most respected modern leaders are part of this immigration, including labour leader Dr. E.F. Gordon, former Premier Sir E.T. Richards and Mrs. Louise Jackson. In fact, our data shows that 578 PRC’s are of British descent, 545 PRC’s are of Portuguese descent, 157 or so are of Jamaican descent and the remainder hail originally from Canada, America, Philippines, Barbados, Ireland and many other countries.

Will we continue to welcome people into the Bermudian family, confident in who we are as a people; or will we shut doors, giving in to the fears that have so much to do with the scaremongering politics of the Opposition?

The PRCs who apply to receive Bermuda status under the current law should be welcomed.

How many people are we talking about?
Immigration records indicate that 1,455 PRCs are potentially eligible for status under Section 20B of the Act.

We do not know how many children of these PRC holders are eligible for status, but believe the number is minimal – possibly a few hundred. We say that because pursuant to the Act the children would have to be

  • At least 18 years old upon application but under the age of 22
  • Ordinarily resident in Bermuda for the five years immediately preceding their status application, and
  • Of good conduct and character without a conviction of any offence that, in the Minister’s opinion shows moral turpitude.

These conditions alone reduce the numbers substantially. In our assessment, most persons who apply under section 20B, will, if they have children, will now have children who are over 22 years of age.

As for spouses, they would have to be married to a Bermudian for 10 years to be eligible, so that clock would start ticking with the status grant.

I want to take a moment on this point on numbers to say that the Opposition has done a disservice to public consideration of this issue by exaggerating numbers involved in virtually all of their public statements. Opposition spokesmen have used numbers ranging from 4,000 to 6,000, deliberately ignoring the official numbers in the public domain. In doing so, they have sought to impair fair consideration of the matter, thereby calling into question their motives.

Will granting status to these individuals take jobs from Bermudians?
The answer is no. They already have jobs so would not be taking anything from Bermudians. PRCs already have the right to live and work in Bermuda. They have full freedom of employment, free of immigration control.

The 2001 Progressive Labour Party White Paper on Permanent Residents addressed this issue saying: “The argument that non-Bermudians will displace Bermudian workers also assumes that both groups are competing for the same job. Very often this is not the case.”

The PLP today chooses to ignore such assessments in favour of keeping people thinking the worst. One Opposition MP was quoted in the Royal Gazette, for example, at a public meeting that a “flood of new status holders” would compete against Bermudians in an “already overheated economy.” This statement is wrong on three counts.

First, there will be no “flood” since PRCs are already here, freely working, as they have been for decades.

Second, they already compete with Bermudians. Under existing legislation, Permanent Residents have the same rights to compete for jobs as Bermudians. Such statements as I have quoted mislead people into thinking that the granting of status to PRCs would eliminate workplace protections for the hiring of Bermudians first. No such protections exist. The only sector of the economy that stipulates a Bermudian-first hiring policy is in the Civil Service, with Hiring Regulations that specify the hiring of Bermudians first, then spouses of Bermudians, followed by PRC holders. Those regulations will remain in force.

Third, Bermuda’s economy, after six years of recession, is absolutely not overheated, as some would have people believe. The main thrust of Government’s work since coming to office is to take a contracting economy that was shedding Bermudian jobs and to put in place conditions that grow jobs. That’s our number one mission – getting Bermudians back to work and ending this era of mass unemployment. We are making progress but there is obviously a long way to go. The Opposition in the meantime want people to believe the worst about this Government, going so far as to say it is actively working against them. The PRC situation is simply one more issue they are using to spread distrust, pessimism and doubt, in their attempt to divide people for political gain.

Will PRC holders make it more difficult for Bermudians to own a piece of the rock?
Granting status to PRCs will allow them to purchase real estate without current restrictions, which limit them to condos and properties with an ARV of $63,000 or properties costing $1.2 million or above.

Although many PRCs eligible for status under 20B already own property, it is very possible that new status holders will look to buy a home and that those purchases as they happen may cause the market value of people’s homes to rise. This is good news for a couple of reasons:

• The Bermuda property market has been depressed for years, with homeowners seeing the value of their properties decline and not being able to sell their homes at a decent price.

• On this point, I again refer to the 2001 White Paper by the then PLP Government that concluded that the impact of new real estate sales would create available rental accommodations “to those Bermudians who have a real need for rental units.”

Are these circumstances of the rights of long-term residents unique to Bermuda?
No. Other jurisdictions in the Caribbean have managed the issue of long-term residents, and come to terms that are much less stringent than Bermuda’s. In the Caribbean, we understand that

  • The British Virgin Islands allows PRCs after 20 years residence. The BVI then grants ‘belonger’ status after one year of holding a certificate of permanent residence. Belonger status can also be conferred after ten years ordinary residence with approval of such an application.
  • Antigua and Barbuda grant applicants PRC with proven ordinary residency and a unique skill set or under an approved scheme by government. After seven years of residency individuals can apply for citizenship.
  • Cayman may grant PRC status after legal and ordinary residence for a period of eight years based on a points system, with full status after being naturalized as a British Overseas Territory Citizen.
  • Dominica requires five years residency to apply for a Permanent Residence Grant or less where the applicant qualifies under an investment fast track programme. After seven years ordinary residence the applicant can apply for naturalization and citizenship.

Bermuda is one of the jurisdictions that we reviewed that had not resolved a pathway to status for its PRCs.

Is this decision on PRCs a “power grab” as the Opposition Leader says?
In the eyes of the Opposition, the status issue is being advanced to influence the outcome of future elections. Implicit to this way of thinking is that PRCs will vote one way and not another.

How the Opposition can say they know how these people will vote today and forever is a grotesque reach. PRCs eligible under Section 20B come from a variety of social and economic backgrounds, from countries all over the world – Barbados, the UK, the United States, Jamaica, Portugal and Canada to name a few.

No good can come from considering policies of national importance on the basis of which party people think other people will support. It’s absolutely the wrong approach to questions of national life and natural justice.

This issue must be decided on whether it is the right thing to do, not how people think people will vote.

As I’ve said before, we are talking about people who have been here for at least 25 years. We’re talking about people who have invested their lives in Bermuda. They are our friends, neighbours and our colleagues. They are members of the community.

Unfortunately, the Opposition has taken a divisive approach to this issue, pitching it in terms of “Us” vs. “Them”. That’s a great pity. This should be a unifying issue because we have the opportunity to join hands to build a strong, unified future together. It is an issue that should be seen as an opportunity to enrich our national life and deepen our commitment to an inclusive and prosperous future.

The Opposition has also taken issue with the fact that PRCs granted status would also be citizens of another country – holders of two passports – who would then have the right to vote on the question of independence for Bermuda. Mr. Walton Brown, JP MP called this situation “untenable” given that “most Bermudians only hold citizenship in Bermuda.”

His position, in effect, is saying that people with more than one passport should not be allowed to vote on Independence. I appreciate that Mr. Brown raised this as an issue in the context of the Supreme Court’s PRC ruling, but it’s a position that essentially says Bermudians who hold more than one passport – and there are many of them – should not be able to fully participate in the political life of the country, because they have a passport from another jurisdiction by birth or through the rights of their parents or grandparents, or because they themselves chose to take out the passport of another jurisdiction. Is Mr. Brown saying then that these Bermudians should not be allowed to vote?

That surely is an untenable position, given that people view a second passport in terms of opportunity for themselves and their families.

Indeed it was during the PLP years in power that the Government helped make it possible for Bermudians to secure British passports for access to job and educational opportunities in the UK and the European Union.

The final point I want to cover is a poll on the PRC issue that was conducted for the Ministry of Home Affairs during the week of July 12 by the marketing research firm Global Research.

The firm polled 404 Bermuda residents aged 18 or more and found that 57% of respondents supported the granting of Bermudian status to PRC holders who had been resident in Bermuda since at least July 31st 1989, with 33% saying they should not be granted status and 9% who did not know.

The firm said the top reasons given for opposing status to PRC holders were

  • PRCs have other rights and should not have a right to vote
  • Bermuda is too small
  • They take jobs away from Bermudians, and
  • Bermudians should not be in competition with PRC holders for land/jobs etc.

The top reasons for supporting the granting of status to PRCs were:

  • They have been contributing to Bermuda in a positive way for many years
  • After more than 20 years, they are part of the community, and
  • 25 years is a long time to be living in a country without status.

In terms of advice to the Minister on the question of granting Bermudian status to PRC holders, Global Research reported that the people polled thought the Minister should view PRC holders on a case-by-case basis and perform background checks before granting status.

I can report that that is exactly what the procedures in place will see to. These are the same procedures that have been in place for many, many years. Each application requires a police certificate showing police convictions or lack thereof. The applications are advertised. The applicant must demonstrate they are of good character through the provision of references. They must demonstrate they have been resident in Bermuda and they must demonstrate they have not been convicted of an offence that in the Minister’s opinion demonstrates moral turpitude.

To summarize,
The Government will allow the legislation passed by the previous government to stand because it is the right and compassionate thing to do.

The people in question have been living and working amongst us for at least 25 years – having lived in Bermuda since on or before 31st July 1989. This is the key date which is why the number of persons eligible is so definitive.

They have invested their lives in the Island. They have contributed to our collective well-being, enriching the Island’s social and economic fabric. They have helped us compete in a very competitive world.

Surely, as Bermudians, we can open our arms and welcome them as fellow Bermudians, and see this decision as something that will add to our life in Bermuda, not diminish it, as some want people to believe.

We cannot be a society that turns people down and shuts doors. Rather, we must be a society that works with the world while standing for fairness, human rights and acceptance.

We hope all Bermudians accept this decision as the fair, compassionate, right and just thing to do.
Thank you Madam President.

-

Update 1.42pm: Shadow Minister for Immigration and External Affairs Walton Brown said,”This decision by the OBA government represents yet another broken election promise. During the 2012 election campaign they stated emphatically they would not act to grant status to PRC holders.

“The PLP adopted the same position but further called for a fundamental review and reform of immigration policy. The decision by Minister Fahy to withdraw the appeal and commit to granting thousands of PRCs holders Bermuda status is a provocative decision which has nothing to do with human rights and more to do with other considerations.

“The PLP caucus will meet to discuss this matter and I have no doubt we will respond to this provocative action in like kind.”

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  1. Born a PRC says:

    Good.

    • Bettty Trump Fact checker says:

      This is NO surprise and invisible, as the government remained silent in regards to this matter. It was without a doubt they would do it. Mr. Fahy’s track record speaks for its self. This is bad move forward. Mr. Fahy will fall on his sword, sooner rather than later. Soon Come, Soon Come.

      This is an outrageous decision, and Bermudians I ask you to Awaken to the mis-takes and false movements forwards by this government. Stand up Bermuda !!

      • Jim Jones says:

        Care to dispute just one of Fahy’s points in his statement? Or are you commenting on the headline rather than the content?

        • Black Soil says:

          For those who disagree with the govt, you should HOLD YOUR HEAD IN SHAME. Just think who the “Bermudians” were in 1609, 1709, 1809, 1909, 2009 and today. But the deepest irony is that it was the disasterous economic policies of the PLP which brought the govt into effective bankupcy. MAYBE if Bermuda had balanced its cheque book (are you listening Paula Cox??) there would be no pressure (human rights aside) to swell the ranks of Bermudians. THINK ABOUT THAT!!!!

          • Impressive says:

            So,, in your own very subjective and somewhat misguided view, If it was not for the global recession during the PLP’s reign, (which I admit could have been less significant with the benefit of hindsight had the PLP adopted a more conservative approach to spending) which led to the island falling into debt, then where would be no need for the OBA to open the borders (for lack of a better phrase) to allow more people to gain status, in the hopes they will vote OBA and then inturn keep the the government in power forever..

            I see,, makes perfect sense.. One thing about when you have a biased view,,, all rationale and common sense somehow leave the room

            • Black Soil says:

              “open the borders” (r u kidding me??)…these people have been part of the Bermuda community since the late 1980′s. Were you even born then “impressive”? Clearly YOU are the one who has a mind which is driven by xenophobia and Grade-A raw meat ignorance rather than any sense of fairness and acceptance.

          • Impressive says:

            so with your rationale,, since Christopher Columbus landed in America in 1492, which led to his fellow Europeans coming over and taking over the land from the Indians who where there, and then grow America to great empire it is today. Should America and every other Developed country open their borders, since as you put it, there are no true natives??? (unless the Indians in the case of America that is)

            • so brain box where did the “native Indians” come from??????????I can only guess

              • DB says:

                @NEW Opposition if you need to ask that question you dont know your history. If u need help its called Google.

            • bermy says:

              This isn’t a case of “opening borders” at all, it is a case of practising fair and reasonable immigration policies. Very similar avenues exist in every other developed country in the world in regards to long term residents and nationalisation/citizenship. The PRC holders are so rooted here that often you can’t even tell who is one and could very well be good friends, neighbours, co workers or acquaintances and know no different.

      • bradley stines says:

        The mistake was made in 2001 by the PLP

        • Build a Better Bermuda says:

          I actually believe it was less of a mistake and more like a train of thought of, ‘we were never going to be kicked out of government, so why would we need to close the back door for our friends’
          Duh

        • micro says:

          Wasn’t a mistake. The PLP knew exactly what they were doing when they wrote the legislation – providing a means for friends and family to gain Bermudian status. It was no loophole, no mistake.

          Are we to believe the PLP weren’t aware of the wording and the implications it will have? Are we further to believe the PLP didn’t use the legislation to provide their supporters and gain votes while they were in office? No, we shouldn’t.

          If they were still in power, do you believe there would be any sort of fuss over it today? There definitely wouldn’t be.

          • Terry says:

            Micro; your correct.
            The mess we are in is because many don’t follow your logic.
            Shalom.

          • Jim Jones says:

            There were so many unintended consequences resulting from poorly thought out PLP legislation it boggles the mind. So yes – I for one find it completely believable.

        • Kunta says:

          @ bradley stines that’s like saying African Chiefs sold Africans to Europeans but the Europeans took them away from their land, many didn’t make it across, those who did make it ,experienced a living Hell.
          De African Chiefs made a mistake and de Europeans Capitalized to de fullest !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

          • jt says:

            the….not de

          • Build a Better Bermuda says:

            Wow, what a stretch, I think you broke something trying to connect that analogy… Like common sense. By the way, the African leaders that involved themselves in the slave trade didn’t make a mistake, they knew exactly what they were doing to profit from it.

      • Put pupils first says:

        This was always going to happen but what steps did the PLP take?

        Did they try and draft clear legislation and bring it before the house? No they boycotted the house because of another issue they failed to deal with in their time.

        I am sure we will see more of the same tactics from the PLP to stir emotions.

      • Betty, Betty, Betty ... says:

        Betty, so you’re upset that the Government is actually going to obey the law?

        Fact is, they don’t have a choice and any changes to the law could only be prospective (i.e., any PRC that has already applied would have to be granted status).

      • Sooooo says:

        Betty…. Please remember that this law, along with all it’s loopholes, was written and pushed through Parlement by the PLP Government. It was a typical PLP “rushed through, without looking” legislation. When it was passed I pointed out some of the problems on his site, and was called a fool. Now the same people want to change it… Who are the fools??

      • ABC says:

        betty trump u startin an uproar im gonna report u

        u alaways negative

      • brigadooner says:

        To All the PRC Bermudians that are reading this article,

        I’d like to apologize for the ignorance that is sometimes displayed on this site. Yes there is a small minority of bigots on this island that are unhappy at the thought of you being equal to them but they are the outliers. They protest so loudly because they know their ranks are few and they are a dying breed.

        The rest of us are so glad you have chosen to live on our island for so many years and we thank you for all that you do for Bermuda.

        I know that this victory is a small one due to the fact that the path to status is still long, complicated, and frustrating but hopefully one day all of Bermuda will welcome you with open arms and we can make that easier.

    • Indeed, this is a great day for Bermuda and its residents who’ve contributed 25 years of their lives to this Island and its people :-)

    • Help says:

      So those here for 15 years now ….what will happen when they have been here for 25?

      • Bermy says:

        They are not eligible for PRC as in order to be eligible they would have had to have been here prior to the said date in 1989. The door for PRCs has closed and will not grow. These people are as stated rooted in the island, have invested time and money and are contributing members to out island. A fair and right decision has been made.

      • Build a Better Bermuda says:

        This is where immigration reform is required, it needs to be thought out with consideration, particularly with regards to PRC children who have been born and raised here. While 1989 is the cut off date for which PRC’s are able to apply, there are many who have been here even before the 80′s, so they would not only have children here, but grand children. Now many other nations immigration policies do allow for their status to be passed to the children born out side the native country, some will not allow that citizenship to be further passed to their children unless that child is born in the native country. This leaves the possibility that some PRC’s grand children many end up stateless.
        I believe that any reform should include the possibility for PRC’s who have lived here for at least 18 years to be granted voting rights, even if they are not given full status. A new class of PRC could be created to grant this, and so long as their children have been born and raised/resided here all their life, those children should then be eligible for a conditional status for so long as they continue to live here full time. And then when their children are born and raised here, those children could then be eligible for unconditional status. I have said it before in many places, if we are willing to just give voting rights to someone just because of who they were born to, when they turn 18, we should give voting rights to a PRC who has lived, worked and contributed to our society after 18 years as well. They have earned the right to have a say in how their future is handled.

  2. Bettty Trump's Fact Checker says:

    I have said it over and over again. This government is “Only taking care of a certain sector of our society.” The HECK with the average citizen in Bermuda. They are protecting their voting base only, and so this is no real surprise to many.

    This government is ensuring that they build upon their voting base, and Wealth for their community. The actions of this government is clear. FOLKS I CAN ONLY SAY WAKE UP, or you will later find yourselves drowning and it will be too late.

    Jim Clingman says, “Some of us, despite knowing who the culprits are, are like Pavlov’s dog, salivating at every word they speak and hoping for a treat or some other reward because we have been so obedient to them.” You will not get a reward. WAKE UP.

    Jim Clingman clearly says, “We will always be sold out if we keep buying in to the empty rhetoric and promises of good times to come. We will continue to complain about the sell-outs, but we will also continue to be left out of the prosperity they enjoy.”

    • Joonya says:

      Take a walk to Phoenix.. I think its time to renew your Rx..

      • Betty and Samuel should stop hiding behind pen names
        All hatred Betty is bad
        If you took a little time to look at the record of your party i.e. the Progressive blank Party you would realise that they were are probably still are anti labour
        They took from the workers and tax payers
        The only hope of the labourers taxpayers and pensioners is the OBA
        What an oopprtunity there was in 98 to help them
        Did not happen
        they were trpped up and their money ripped up
        If the wish of you and others is to create a state of goat and chicken farmers and fisherman supporting a population of say 25 to 30 thousand just say so
        at least the economics lecturer and some others are reasonably honest about wanting that situation

        Hatred is bad
        Racial or religious
        Stop it; we are all human beings and many PRCs have made great contributions to Bermuda
        One I know has spent 30 years running the candy stripers as a volunteer
        And for goodness sake have the courage to reveal your name
        Joe Wakefield

    • Build a Better Bermuda says:

      It is astounding how much more accurate that is when applied to your PLP in reflect their motives, your so fond of quoting, so here is one for you if you ever decide to reflect on the PLP’s reason for using divisive tactics

      “We are going to emancipate ourselves from mental slavery because whilst others might free the body, none but ourselves can free the mind. Mind is your only ruler, sovereign. The man who is not able to develop and use his mind is bound to be the slave of the other man who uses his mind….” Marcus Garvey, Nova Scotia, October 1937

  3. Samuel L. Jackson says:

    Resign Fahy

    • Why? The P.L.P. introduced the Law and the O.B.A. “toed the line”. I hope them that are granted Bermudian status don’t ever vote for the Party that didn’t want them here :-(

      • Truth Teller says:

        I wonder if Raymond Ray was one of those PAID out of that account by DeCosta to push the racist OBA line pre-election.

        And by the looks of it he still sounds as if he is on the payroll…

        • Sandgrownan says:

          Race card! You fail!

        • Anon says:

          Truth Teller

          “the racist OBA line pre-election”????? Are you sure you live in Bermuda?

        • No, I was paid by the PLP…You’re a twit bie’ / girl or whatever you may be, “Truth Teller” I speak and write what I feel needs to be mentioned. Granted, I am not always correct but, at least I sign my birth given name and not like some others hiding behind fictitious name… hint hint?

        • lucky 7 says:

          @truth teLler–I wasn’t paid by anyone, am not involved in Government and I agree 100% with Raymond Ray.

    • serengeti says:

      Why? For allowing a 13-year old law passed by the PLP to remain in place?

      • serengeti, the Progressive Labour Party were the majority in the House for all them years and you and others are now attempting to blame this new O.B.A. Party for the mistake/s (tongue in cheek)that the P.L.P. made! Huh? :-( (Please, be real wouldn’t you)

        • Ringmaster says:

          I believe from the comments and thread, Serengeti was responding to Samuel L Jackson.

    • Sandgrownan says:

      Why?

  4. A proud day for Bermuda says:

    I very much hope that we can all begin to love each other again with this put to bed.

    It has been a horrible few weeks on this island and this is what it is, thanks to the opposition, but let’s all move on in harmony.

    • Bettty Trump Fact checker says:

      A proud day for PRCs holders, but far from it for the born Bermudians. This is just the UBPoba rearing their ugly heads. This back-door approach by the government is clear now to many, and speaks to the lack of transparency, integrity and honestly of this government. False Government and one of lies only.

      The UBP is alive and rearing their ugly heads once again. Now repeating the actions they did years ago… Change, I think NOT !!

      • Joonya says:

        You really are starting to sound delusional. Boy.. that lot has sure done a good one on you.

        Seek better professional help.

      • Sandgrownan says:

        Why?

      • Jim Jones says:

        Someone correct me if I’m wrong, but didn’t the PLP government create the whole PRC classification because there were a ton of people who were unsuccessful in gaining status from the UBP government? Someone other than Betty, that is.

        • flikel says:

          The PLP created the classification to give people permanent residency in Bermuda, but was not intended to be a guaranteed pathway to status.

          The PLP is being cast as anti-foreign, but this anti-foreign regime rose to the occasion and gave a large number of people the right to live and work in Bermuda indefinitely.

          • Jim Jones says:

            So what was their thinking behind basically giving them every right under the sun besides the right to vote?

            And who exactly has been moaning about being ‘second class citizens’ in their own country lately?

          • Build a Better Bermuda says:

            But no ability to have a say in how the future is decided

      • cmbbda says:

        “This back-door approach by the government is clear now’ — it was the PLP who opened this ‘back door’ ! You are so brainwashed!

      • John H. Young says:

        I’m a born Bermudian…I have no issue with PRC’s getting status if they meet all the criteria. And Betty…lets not forget the back door politics of your beloved PLP.

      • A proud day for Bermuda says:

        Nope, the 5 of us born Bermudians in my household are proud.

        Moron

    • flikel says:

      “It has been a horrible few weeks on this island and this is what it is, thanks to the opposition, but let’s all move on in harmony.”

      Do you really believe this?

      1) The PLP did not cause JetGate
      2) The PLP did not force the resignation of the Premier, his own inner circle kicked him out
      3) The PLP did not force the resignation of the AG
      4) The PLP did not force the resignation of the OBA Chairman
      5) The PLP was not responsible for the JetGate report, which is apparently not thorough, indicates further wrong doing and is being contradicted by the people it names

      The OBA’s issues are internal and they are self destructing. This is not due to the PLP actions, but by the OBA’s own actions.

      • Build a Better Bermuda says:

        No, but the PLP is set to divide this country with misleading and quite often flat out lies, in an attempt to destabilize the country further for their own political ambitions, and not for the good of Bermudians

      • 1minute says:

        But the PLP did cause this problem…

      • Bettty Trump's Fact Checker says:

        Brilliant @Flikely, you are spot on…but in time they will all fall on their swords, and it will be Fahy followed by Crockwell. My predictions have been spot on so far, and I see it coming soon. ITs just a matter of time. A party built on falsehoods and lies will never stand on a solid foundation… soon come, soon come….

        The clicks from the diehards will not prevent what is about to take place soon within the OBA, they will indeed continue on the pathway of self destructing. The lack of transparency and honesty is killing the OBAubp..PRCs will not even be able to save them…… lies continue and this will be their falling down….soon come…soon come…falling on their swords…

    • Terry says:

      What “opposition”.

    • Impressive says:

      Come on,, All that is horrible is the fault of the PLP and all that is good is through the OBA,,. What we have in Bermuda are some very good Script writers, maybe Hollywood should come to Bermuda looking for talent.. smh

  5. Alan Smith says:

    Very good reasoning and I support this 100%. This is a brave man who knows he will be vilified but does the right thing anyway. All Bermudians should read the Act, the White paper, the Human rights Act and the full release by Minister Fahy and then come to an informed decision.

  6. Proud2bBermudian says:

    This government is not for Bermudians. They have got to go. Blue green black white. We all are going to suffer from this. I hope you all are prepared to leave your place you call home. May not be today. But it’s coming.

    • sonso says:

      Please expand and expatiate our knowledge!

    • Unbelievable says:

      Proud2bBermudian, you have bought into the PLP’s nonsense. PRCs are here already because of PLP legislation. The PLP created the loophole in the first place, but by error. PRCs can work wherever they want. They can buy property and have a right to live in Bermuda. They just don’t have the right to vote. Now they might if they are granted status. Please don’t be a pawn in the PLP’s chess game.

      Please read the statement by the Minister and don’t just skip to the blog comments.

      • wantwant cantget says:

        so if this is a loophole created by error.
        why hasnt the “error” been corrected?

        • Build a Better Bermuda says:

          It wasn’t an error, it was a clause, the error was that the PLP forgot to close it after they were done, or maybe they didn’t think they were done with it yet

          • Sandgrownan says:

            The PLP knew about it and didn’t close it because they thought they’d win the election and could use it to grant status to whomever they liked.

            How’s that for a conspiracy theory?

        • Jim Jones says:

          This is one argument that cracks me up.

          To those that moan about the OBA not supporting the recent PLP move to ‘fix the loophole’:

          Why wouldn’t the OBA government want to fix a poorly written, hastily prepared piece of legislation with yet another poorly written, hastily prepared piece of legislation?

          If you can’t answer that question there is no sense in debating this issue.

          • Bettty Trump's Fact Checker says:

            Did you forget about the poorly written pieces of legislation that were also recently corrected by the OBAubp? They rushed to fixed them, so why not fix this one…. ooh you know the real reason, so stop with it. Both parties have written legislation which require fixing… so lets not make it appear as if the PLP are the only guilty party….but after all, it was several lawyers who wrote that law, why did they fail to write it correctly? The OBAubp have an agenda and it sure is not the average Bermudians.

            • Anbu says:

              Why dont u just say what u mean by “average bermudian”? U think you’re slick or something? Or do u just lack the testicular fortitude.

              • Jim Jones says:

                Don’t bother. If you look closely, she didn’t actually say anything. In fact, she never does.

    • serengeti says:

      Why are we all going to suffer from this? I can’t see it making very much difference at all one way or the other.

      The law is the law. It is what it is.

    • Joonya says:

      Stop scaremongering! Please.

    • John H. Young says:

      Nor is the PLP for Bermudians. I am a true Bermudian with generations before me and I can say with complete conviction that the PLP will never be the answer to our problems again. They should disband and reconvene with new members who actually care about all Bermudians…and I mean ALL Bermudians. I will never support a government that excludes one part of our society. The PLP has shown that they only care about one faction of our society…I am not prepared to give up, but if I have to leave Bermuda I will…. If I can’t use it, nor will you.

    • Bermy says:

      We are not going to suffer at all from this. These individuals allready live and work here, they will have zero impact on the employment situation or anything else. If anything it will likely become beneficial as those who have felt in limbo can now have the opportunity to invest more of there hard earned time and money into our island.

  7. Robert says:

    This island is heading toward something catastrophic

    • Put pupils first says:

      I agree. I think the PLP will win the next election!

  8. Robert says:

    Michael fahy, do the right thing and disappear !!

  9. Unbelievable says:

    I support this move too. Also, the Minister’s response to the PLP’s divisive nature and messaging is pitch-perfect.

    Despite this, I hope the Minister braces himself for all the backlash that he is about to receive.

  10. Stephen Thomson says:

    As a Bermudian, I applaud you for making the right decision.
    These individuals have given a quarter of a century of their lives to Bermuda. They live here, work here and contribute to our society. Clearly they deserve to be Bermudian. Governments are entrusted to govern and make the difficult decisions. Well done and thank you.
    Our children will benefit from this decision.

  11. campervan says:

    Thank you minister for Standing Strong on human rights for the people of Bermuda.

    • Bettty Trump Fact checker says:

      Stop it Campervan, this is far from being a Human Rights issues. PRCs are not stateless. They have another place to go to live. The OBA need votes, and this is merely what they did, give themselves votes. The lies and spin is really a JOKE by this bad government. This government may be a one time government regardless. A lack of transparency and honestly by this government. Sad you spit out the same lies as the government, rather than hold them accountable.

      The hypocritical actions of OBAubp are not surprising, based upon how the party was developed. Scandal in less than 18 months of their leadership.

      • campervan says:

        Your lack of humanity degrades all of our humanity Betty.
        Thank goodness the law of the land and the human rights commission’s recommendations are being upheld.

      • serengeti says:

        It is a Human Rights issue.

        A segment of the population has a legal and constitutional right to this. And you want to deny their legal and constitutional right. That is a Human Rights issue.

      • Jay Maloy says:

        Betty, the reason no one takes you seriously is because you seem to have the time to comment multiple times on different comments in a thread.

        You made the point that you are against this in your first comment. No one wants to scroll down a read your opinion half a dozen times.

        And all you do is bash the OBA and praise the PLP. You won’t convince anybody who doesn’t already share your viewpoint because you’re a one trick pony and the trick isn’t very impressive.

      • Joonya says:

        You are a pathetic human being. No compasion. Where, please tell, where would someone who was born here, raised in the school system, contributed to the society thru employment and community service, who has know no other country as their’s.. where, please tell me where is the other place to live??
        As I mentioned earlier you are delusional.
        You are just lucky that you situation was different when you popped out of the womb.

      • sonso says:

        What about all of the Bermudian dual-passport holders Betty? Do you expect them to be afforded the same rights as you suggest for PRCs?

      • Build a Better Bermuda says:

        But it is a rights issue, the issue is that the PLP gave these people these rights

      • Bermy says:

        So how about this Betty. The PRC holders can not have status and remain in an untenable state of limbo and all the Bermudians holding EU passports and those moving to the uk (either for gainful employment or the attractive benefits system) can hand there passports and the rights afforded to them with it back in. Sound fair?

      • Jim Jones says:

        Betty can you please point to one single fact in the Minister’s statement that you have ‘checked’ today?

      • Build a Better Bermuda says:

        So you believe that anybody who has lived somewhere for a quarter of a century shouldn’t have the right to have a say in how their future is determined, you don’t consider this a basic human right of having a voice in your homes destiny.
        Then by your own argument, we need to undue any and all work done by Dr. Gordon, Dame Lois Browne Evans and Mr. ET Richards, as none of them were Bermudian and should have had a say in what went on in this country. If you do not support this last statement, then by your own argument , you are a hypocrite

      • Anbu says:

        At least campervan doesnt get paid to have an opinion unlike u lot of bettys with your scripted rubbish. U think u get ypur point across because u type the same message 6 times in one thread? HA!!!

  12. Dercia says:

    this is crazy because i STILL cant get status because of that stupid cut off date and my daughter who is eligible can but cant give it to me because i am older than 24. It should be case by case!!

  13. Ian says:

    And behold…. Scoooore to a massive surge in anti-foreigner, anti-white, anti-priveleged sentiments…

  14. Dercia says:

    sorry my daddy can get status but not give it me** (see previous comment)

  15. Jo Blo says:

    While I do believe there are many that deserve this opportunity, to go the route of ‘back-door’ methods does not speak to the righteousness that this cause should be built on. It furthermore leaves out scores that probably deserve this access. Comprehensive immigration reform should have been the approach. This will do little to improve the rapidly worsening feelings towards the OBA and foreigners on this island. And I can only pray that will not manifest itself in ways that place innocent people at risk.

    • Jim Jones says:

      So what you’re saying is this.

      1) Continue to appeal the decision despite an immense amount of legal advice to the contrary.

      2) Draft legislation to eliminate the possibility of anyone here before 1989 of ever gaining Bermudian status.

      3) Undertake ‘comprehensive immigration reform’ in order to determine a fair pathway to citizenship so that those here before 1989 might become eligible for status.

      I’m sorry Jo, but this makes no sense and you know it. If “comprehensive immigration reform” is something you and other PLP supporters could get behind, we have just been handed exactly that, on a silver platter, courtesy of PLP legislation passed in 2001.

      There are no arguments against this move that are based on logic and facts, this is purely an attempt to scare up the emotions of the PLP voter base. It’s working quite well, but that is all that is going on here. Mr. Fahy neatly dispels all the ‘facts’ that the PLP talking heads have been spewing in the last few months on this issue.

      • Jo Blo says:

        I have to be careful offering time to anyone that would assume I am a “PLP supporter” as, more often than not, I find there is little to no point engaging them with the likes of reason and common sense. I voted for the OBA btw…

        There is nothing outlandish about what I have said above. Senator Fahy’s decision yesterday already plays into the expectations of many that believe the OBA is simply executing a pre-established “game plan”.

        At a time where polarization on the island along racial, national and social-economic lines is at a high, what good do you think will come of this move (as a contributing factor). There is no good will shown to a large segment of this community when back-door methods are taken to getting around legislation with clear intent. It simply has the effect of insulting peoples’ intelligence and promoting increased divisiveness.

        Furthermore, what is happening here falls way short of addressing the concerns of the many that STILL do not have access to status through this path despite being adults, born here and knowing nothing other than Bermuda.

        It smells of “agenda” to anyone being honest with themself and my concerns are sincere as there should be a healthy fear of potential backlash in response. We can all admit not all folks think things through before acting.

    • Anon says:

      Jo Blo,

      Dude, hope that wasn’t meant to be a veiled threat….”And I can only pray that will not manifest itself in ways that place innocent people at risk”. Gesh, stop watching so many Godfather movies.

      • Jo Blo says:

        Veiled threat??? Do you simply chose to steer clear of intelligent dialogue when someone post valid concerns that rub YOU the wrong way? The people you should be concerned about re “threats” dont spend much time on these blogs… Btw, feel free to take a moment to actually read the rest of my comment above…

    • WTF says:

      I find it interesting (1) that so many refer to this being a “back door” method of bestowing citizenship or a “loophole” in the law; and (2) that the legislators of the day, outside lawyers and whoever else was involved in writing the relevant clause(s) did not realize the impact it could and does have. It’s a little late in the day for the PLP to be howling for a change to legislation they created. To do so only adds credence to the criticism of their actions. Suck it it up and leave it alone…to keep harping about it will cost you and the country too dearly. I suggest the Opposition, its members and followers look to ways of making the law, as it stands, work for everyone–them, other Bermudians and PRC holders alike, simply because it is the right thing to do! The end.

  16. Edmund Wells says:

    Before this gets spun in one direction or another, like every other issue these days, it’s important to keep in mind that Minister Fahey’s decision is not about PRC rights.

    He is simply making a judgement about what the law (written by the PLP Government) says, and how a court is likely to view an appeal.

    Two very, very different things.

    For those that want to deny PRC holders their rights, the avenue of new legislation is always open.

    EW

    • Tell the truth says:

      They tried legislation but the ubpobabda blocked it!!! And stop with that “denying prc holders their rights” trash!!! No one has a “right” to have citizenship in another country!!! If that’s the case I’d be demanding the “right” to American citizenship right now!!! Your argument is a false and a deceptive one!!! Yes, the law was never intended to give citizenship and those prc holders knew it then and know it now!!! The right thing to do would have been to amend the legislation in order to fully express the original will and intent of the people of Bermuda as they had communicated to their elected officials at the time!!!

      • Noncents says:

        @Tell the truth- Have you lived in the USA for 25 years?

        • Tell the truth says:

          @ noncents….even if I had, it still wouldn’t mean I had a “right” to demand citizenship and you know it! Obfuscate much???

          • WTF says:

            @Tell the Truth: “…still wouldn’t mean I had a ‘right’ to demand citizenship’…”

            You have the “right” to make any demand you wish; however, you do not automatically have the right to receive it. US Green Card holders have the right to make application for citizenship after a stated period of residency in that country. If they meet all the criteria under immigration laws and regulations, they will in all likelihood receive it.

      • Edmund Wells says:

        Tell the truth-

        Actually, there is a path to US citizenship for non-US citizens, which, once you’ve met the criteria, allows you to demand citizenship. Please, if you’ve met those criteria, demand away!

        Of course, an amendment to the legislation would certainly clarify the issue. But that has NOTHING to do with Minister Fahey’s decision today.

        Again, whether Minister Fahey elects to continue or stop a losing fight in the courts has little to do with the rights of PRC holders.

        With regard to clarifying legislation, can you identify the legislation that you say was blocked?

        EW

        • Tell the truth says:

          Wells, you know very well that the PLP introduced legislation weeks ago in order to fix the loophole! And those in the USA don’t have a “right” to citizenship and it is not a human rights issue. They must abide by the immigration laws of that country! You can’t go to any other country and demand entry and or citizenship! Foreigners tried that in Australia and they were ceremoniously sent packing! They even took the govt. to court and the govt. held its ground and won!!!

      • Celery™ says:

        “No one has a “right” to have citizenship in another country!!! If that’s the case I’d be demanding the “right” to American citizenship right now!!!”

        You do realize that a Green Card holder in the US (PRC) after 5 years of living in the US can apply to be naturalized as a citizen, right?

      • Build a Better Bermuda says:

        That’s kind of funny, because if you have been living in the US for 25 years and are not a citizen, it means you would be a green card holder, and the green card is an avenue to citizenship, and you wouldn’t have to wait 25 years.

      • Bermy says:

        Well set the example and relinquish your uk/eu passport

      • Betty, Betty, Betty ... says:

        Sorry to disappoint you but any amendment would be propective in nature so any PRC that had applied prior to said revised law taking effect would have to be granted status.

  17. Alvin Williams says:

    With this decision the OBA has insured that Bermuda will see a season of social protest the likes of which this country has never experience. I am not sure Mr. Fahy and those who support this government understand this; and therefore the chips will fall where they may.

    • Unbelievable says:

      Oh yay! Alvin is promising another protest march.

      • Anon says:

        Alvin is so excited now….he’ll actually have something to do now rather than sit at home and dream up hateful conspiracy theories

        • Ringmaster says:

          It is actually a criminal offence to incite social unrest and encourage riots.

          • Creamy says:

            Alvin continually makes threats like this. It’s the last resort of someone who can’t win using democracy. And yes, it is illegal.

    • Sandgrownan says:

      Sounds like a threat from the resident nutter.

      And it’s “ensured” not “insured”.

    • BlueFamiliar says:

      I suspect you may be right, Mr Williams, however I certainly hope you are not.

      Bermuda is on a tightrope right now, protests as you suggest will only cause all Bermudians harm. We can’t afford that.

      So for those who might be considering protest, choose carefully the type and consider the way it will be seen from the rest of the world on which we rely.

      Peaceful, reasonably protest is something that comes with the freedom of democracy.

      Protest that incites and supports irrational behaviourm slurs or violence against others, does no one good.

      Look at the rest of the world and consider what’s going on elsewhere and whether the level of protest is warranted in this country.

    • Alan Smith says:

      social unrest, slavery , africa, klu klux clan etc etc. Every comment you make Alvin is laced with hatred and insinuates violence.

      You dont have a real grip of the issues – you never respond to push back on your views and seem intent on continuing your crusade to abuse, ridicule and threaten those you consider not to be black Bermudians. The fact that you cannot see the irony of your posts and really self reflect on what you are saying is increadible. I dont know if you have friends or family memebers who can help but I think you need to try and enlighten yourself and raise the level of your debate above hatred based on history towards knowledge of the present.

    • sonso says:

      I am guessing you mean similar social protests from the PLP? I am not too convinced that those that showed up to that “march” really reflected the true feelings of our community. All i saw was a bunch of older, angry supporters who, with all due respect, are on their way out and should make room for the younger generation to take this country forward. Which category do you fall in Mr. Williams?

      And lastly, if we as a country really want true change and progress, the first step is the dissolution of party politics and the implementation of better governance system!

    • cmbbda says:

      A ‘season of social protest’ will do NO GOOD, it will harm EVERYONE on this Island – regardless of race, origin or political affiliation. I am not sure Marc Bean and those who support the PLP understand this.

    • Cow Polly says:

      The decision was made by the poorly written legislation of the PLP, the OBA tried to appeal but have received legal advice that tells them its a waste of tax payers money to proceed. So the decision not to fight it wasn’t based on any political motivation other than saving money. If the opposition choose to down tools and protest, then they are protesting against their own crafted legislation – how ridiculous does that sound?

    • Jim Jones says:

      What was it again? “This too shall pass” – said by a man who made a tremendously unpopular decision based on what he thought was the right thing to do.

      If three years from now the economy has rebounded and people are back to work any protests this summer something this ridiculous will be a distant memory that most people won’t care two flying fig newtons about.

    • truth be told says:

      Alvin and his stupid threats again…we don’t care what you say or think!

  18. Silence Do Good says:

    As a supporter of labour and individuals rights, I am glad that the July 31st, 1989 PRC issue is settled and welcome these individuals and their families as official Bermudians, a name which I am proud to call myself and now those PRC’s.

    Next – What will become of the others PRCs or Long Term Residence that have been in Bermuda for “x” plus years? Do they not deserve the same rights as afforded to these individuals who has been part of our community for so long?

    I hope our government reforms the immigration act to be more in-line with modern countries that see immigration as an opportunity to advance their society’s socially and economically. I support any government party who uses the immigration tools appropriately, not as a means of suppressing individual’s rights to security of family or ability to be represented.

    • Build a Better Bermuda says:

      Indeed, there needs to be some consideration given in any immigration reform, that would allow for people who have lived in this country for any period over 2 decades at the very least the right to votes, even if full status is not granted. Anybody who has lived and contributed to the well being of Bermuda that long should have a say in how the countries affairs are handled. Even going as far as granting their children status when they come of age and have only ever resided here.

  19. San George says:

    Let’s sell citizenship next – that money can go to Crockwell, Cannonier, Fahy, Green, etc.

  20. Bermydude says:

    A right human rights decision!!

    In the statement that the Minister made, the law is clear, the PLP did a mistake and didn’t correct, that’s the bottom line!!

  21. Just sayin.... says:

    I am in agreement with the majority. This is a good decision for Bermuda.

    Perhaps the esteemed Opposition would like to be reminded that the only natives on this great Island of ours walked on four legs!

    We are an Island of Immigrants. Embracing diversity was the only way we have managed to survive the last 400+ years of being isolated.

    The sooner that we all accept that change must happen for all us to move forward, then the sooner we can get our Island built back up. Divisiveness for the sake of Political gains has always been a trademark of certain Party on the Island. Perhaps it’s time to go back to the non two-party system and make them all Independents!

  22. Starting point says:

    Fahy seems to be one of the few politicians who will actually put his neck out and do his job. To be honest many disliked (and many liked of course) former Premier Brown but I would think the the former premier would at least acknowledge respect for Mr. Fahy, both men at least made decisions and stuck to them, like them or not imo.

    I suppose it all comes down to your definition of Bermudian, do you have to be born here to Bermudians parents to have rights on this island? My personal feeling is that the second you have status, born, married 10 years, PRC you are Bermudian others disagree but they should stop and think about how many famous Bermudians there have been that fit into my definition, including political leaders, sport heroes, community champions from all sides of the political divide.

  23. watching says:

    The OBA plan continues…

    • sonso says:

      Unlike the PLP’s non-plan?

      In case you are not aware, which by your screename implies you are, the creation of the PRC status, and the loophole that ensued was drafted, approved and discovered all while guess who was in power? And the first two tries dont count!

  24. Dreary says:

    Well done Minister,the PRC HOLDERS DESERVE STATUS AFTER BEING HERE 25 yrs.

  25. PBanks says:

    People who take public transportation, please be prepared for another wildcat strike. I really wouldn’t be surprised to see the BIU down tools over the PRC issue, sad to say.

    • sonso says:

      Of course they will. You heard it from the horses mouth himself that the masses will be “mobilized”, whatever that means!

  26. Thin End says:

    Oh for Heaven’s sake!!

    The PLP wrote the law that enables the PRCs to achieve their natural rights.

    Not even the Court of Appeal can reverse the PLP-written law.

    Onwards and upwards Bermuda. Working and volunteering together for our community.

    • islandboy says:

      Let us not forget that the PLP were aware of this loophole on October 2012 and decided not to act.

  27. Thin End says:

    …and another thing…

    Mr Fahy is a decent, honourable and honest gentleman.

    This is a dangerous chacteristic in politics as those who are not like-minded (the majority) need to get him out of the way.

    Some may not like what they hear, but they hear the FACTS. If you can’t handle the truth then stop making up wild assumptions to justify your weak position.

    We need more Mr. Fahys.

    “Beware the ides of March.” … or any other day at present. Do not make him a scapegoat or Bermuda will be weaker.

  28. TSOL says:

    This is all just politics, but the PLP have been bringing emotion into by talking about job theft and Bermudian birthrights. These things do not even enter the picture as PRC’s live here as full time residents, can apply for and work any job, and own properity.
    I don’t know any PRC’s personally but I’m assuming with all the stink the PLP are making that the vast majority of them are white and they therefore fear who they will vote for in the next election. AND THAT’S IT, NO JOB STEALING, JUST FEARS WHERE THESE NEW VOTES WILL GO THREE AND A HALF YEARS FROM NOW.

    On the other hand if most of the PRC’s were black’s from the Caribbean, would the OBA be so quick to see that they got a vote? Probably not, and for the same reasons, fear of who they would most likely vote for.
    It’s not pretty or nice, but like I said it’s politics, with an eye on the next election.

  29. Tell the truth says:

    Exactly how many of Oba’s paid bloggers are on here today, carrying their water and racking up “likes” on all of these false prc arguments!!! I’m disappointed in myself for voting for this wizard of oz party of smoke & mirrors!!!

    • BlueFamiliar says:

      Any idea how to get to be one of those paid bloggers? And would they be considered part of creating employment opportunities for Bermudians?

    • Steve Davis says:

      LOL! Speaking of false arguments! Tell us why you decided to vote OBA? By your use of standardized PLP slogans one might think that you are the only one getting paid to be here!

    • sonso says:

      Cuz you know you didnt vote for the OBA! Stop lying to yourself

  30. Steve Davis says:

    GOOD! another decision made. Dilly dally over.

    I love how the PLP harp on about scandal and the majority of the peoples wishes etc. The people voted this Government in and all of the so called scandal is in reality an internal party issue relating to how the OBA campaign was financed! It has nothing to do with the Public or Public money other than the public’s perception.

    The PLP smear campaign maybe in full affect as they do their best to attack people’s families, businesses and livelihoods. But what they hate the most is a guy like Fahy. This man has the guts to make decisions that will better our community and our society. PRC’s were used as a political scapegoat by the PLP, something to rile the masses and blame their troubles on. It could not be further from the truth, the false information spread by the PLP extremists and the disgraceful personal racist attacks on PRCs, our neighbors our friends.

    Let this be a lesson Bermuda, the PLP is not for Bermudians they are for what they call their own kind being the working class man. Nothing more, nothing less than that. Anyone who works in the private sector, the majority of your taxes go to paying the BIU/PLP supporter’s wages. Think about that, you are basically sponsoring them day in and day out. Without the right minded hard working people of the private sector this Island would collapse overnight. Yet to the PLP/BIU you are the enemy!

  31. truth be told says:

    a certain member of the plp said it and it has been said many times back to the plp,
    We Don’t Care What You Think!

  32. Gotham says:

    Well done Minister Fahy, finally a leader with the courage and integrity to do what is morally right. End of story.

  33. Dieu et mon Droit says:

    The fact is the UBP passed section 20B of BIPA into law in 1989 this amended section created the loop hole that has now been interpreted by the Court.

    The PLP introduced PRC Policy as a response to the persons residing here over a long term and assiign them some rights short of Bermuda Status

    Proud2bBermudian, you have bought into the PLP’s nonsense. PRCs are here already because of PLP legislation. The PLP created the loophole in the first place, but by error. PRCs can work wherever they want. They can buy property and have a right to live in Bermuda. They just don’t have the right to vote. Now they might if they are granted status. Please don’t be a pawn in the PLP’s chess game.

    Please read the statement by the Minister and don’t just skip to the blog comments

  34. Girl on Fire says:

    I’m Bermudian, I’m happy with the decision, and no ones pays me to be a blogger or political supporter.

  35. clearasmud says:

    The Government has admitted that there is a loop hole in the legislation which is also an admission that it was not intended to be there so if we are to believe what they are now saying about it is the “right” thing to do then why did they not fix it so that the PRCs got status instead of lauching an appeal they were told would not succeed! If it is the right thing to do to grant the status then why appeal at all! Yes the PLP created the loophole but the OBA while admitting it was there did nothing to fix it! Now they want credit for doing the “right thing”! They said nothing while this issue took on a life of its own and now are attempting to distance themselves from the mess that has resulted from them doing Nothing!

    • Creamy says:

      The law is what it is. You can’t choose which bits you enforce and which bits you don’t. You can’t say “oops. That was not what we meant”, 13 years later. Everybody has the right to have laws enforced exactly as they are written. This group of people has a legal and constitutional right.

  36. Gotham says:

    One thing I am curious about – How many work permits will be needed to properly run a casino? My guess is about 335 per casino – say 100 croupiers over three shifts, security detail 60 at 20 per shift, administration 30 at 10 per shift, full time cleaning crew on 24/7 another 20, food and beverage including booze at least 80, so that comes to 290 so far. Add a few decent entertainment acts another 20, plus 25 adult entertainers because Bermudians definitely do not do that sort of work. The bottom line is (IMHO) that it is very doubtful, especially in a recovered economy whenever that happens, that qualified Bermudians will be available or even want this sort of work… If Mr. Thad Hollis really resigned over the referendum issue, then I applaud him – because this is a matter that requires a lot more debate and consideration. I doubt Casinos are the panacea some would have us believe.

    My Point Here? It’s not a few PRCs mostly of or close to retirement age we should be thinking of or even worried about (wish them well and give them their due, i.e status) – it’s what two or three Casinos will do to the fabric of this country that is the real issue of the day.

  37. Crystal Smith says:

    We do not care who allowed the loophole!!!!! WE WANT THIS FIXED NOW!!!! This isn’t about THE OBA OR THE PLP…. NO TO STATUS!

    • Betty, Betty, Betty ... says:

      So you’re saying that the government should disobey the law?

    • Silence Do Good says:

      With that kind of thinking someone should have said no to your ancestor’s status as well.

      In the next election the people of Bermuda will decide if this “loophole” and the divide it has created among us will have the majority to continue or be closed.

      1,455 individuals all voting one way spread out in all constituencies will not affect the next election one way or another. What will affect the next election is if the non-voters in the last election get out and vote. Those individual will decide the future of Bermuda.

    • Gotham says:

      At the end of the day not only is no fix required, but there is no fix. These folks are here to stay,vote, breed, you name it, so get used to it.

  38. Terry says:

    St.George 1
    Somerset 1

    OBA 1
    PLP 1.
    Bermuda 0

    Shalom.

  39. Sandgrownan says:

    Walton sounds a bit like Alvin.

    “…..response to this provocative action.”

    It might be provocative if you are perpetually offended, but really how does this affect Bermudians? It doesn’t. It’s simply an excuse for the PLP to return to their favourite crutch and only tactic, the emotion of race based politics. Shameful.

    • Real talk (original) says:

      If you don’t understand how a democratically-elected Government making immigration policy based on an unintended loophole in the legislation affects Bermudians, I’m not sure we can have a conversation on the matter.

      • Edmund Wells says:

        Real talk (original)-

        Agree.

        And if you don’t understand the difference between abandoning an unwinnable appeal in the courts and setting policy through legislation, there is absolutely no conversation on the matter.

        Of course, that won’t stop the mis-characterization of Minister Fahey’s decision by people with an agenda, will it?

        Like the mis-characterization of the Governor’s recent decision.

        The Governor said, “Bring me more evidence”. The PLP says he is ignoring the people.

        People are emotional and resentful of the financial and economic damage caused Bermuda by the previous Government. The PLP says that’s racist.

        Fahey said he was dropping an unwinnable appeal. The PLP says he is favoring PRC holders.

        Spin and manipulation of the truth. It will rip the Island apart.

        EW

  40. JH says:

    Decisions decisions. Which OBA item will PLP complain about today?

    Goodness, until an hour ago it was the chairman’s resignation.
    Right before that it was the land grab thing.
    And that is what knocked the PRC thing off the front page.

    Ooops – the PRC thing is back.

    So many protests , so little time. So little done while you were actually in power.

    Life’s a beach inna?

  41. A Dingo says:

    Ah, how hilarious and ironic it is that the xenophobic PLP actually did the decent, moral thing here by complete accident. Is it too early to crack the Champers?

  42. truth be told says:

    a member of the plp said it and it has been said many times back to the plp,
    We Don’t Care What You Think!

  43. Dreary says:

    Keep up the good work OBA.The PLP paved the way for PRC holders to get status and the OBA will see it to its conclusion.Get Bermuda back to work after the previous 8 yrs of failure.

  44. Sir George Somers says:

    When I first arrived in Bermuda in 1609 there was no one here. We are, it seems, all immigrants. Since the first days, the island has seen continuous immigration from peoples across the globe and the island has flourished. It’s sad to see the Somers Isles facing such tough times with job uncertainty, massive public debt and a housing crisis. But looking across the spectrum of Bermuda’s long history, it is clear that our past triumphs came from embracing change and integrating new people with new ideas into our society.

    In the early days we sold ambergris and grew tobacco and onions. Now we are a globally respected centre for insurance. How far we have come! Who can doubt that our future success will continue to depend on our ability to integrate the next wave of people with new ideas and different experiences to enrich our society, and provide much needed capital for new businesses. Bermuda, welcome the future with open arms. if we close ranks and hide behind xenophobia to try and stop the world coming to us, the future for all Bermudians will be one of pain and poverty. Let today’s decision by Mr Fahy be the first step towards a rational immigration policy that encourages new wealth and prosperity for all Bermudians.

  45. Coffee says:

    So my friend macio came from Honduras in 1986 as a pot washer . After a year he sent for his wife . Within a year she was pregnant and they had a girl born in Bermuda . When learning that the child wasn’t a Bermudian the wife soon after went back home . Through the years Macio went back to Honduras regularly and had two more children with his wife .
    Macio is a PRC and will soon get Bermuda status . He will bring back his wife and his children . They will also derive citizenship . We as a country are embarking on a very slippery immigration slope .

    • 32n64w says:

      “Macio is a PRC and will soon get Bermuda status”

      If he hasn’t been living here continuously he won’t qualify for status.

    • Gotham says:

      Good for Macio. We could use a few more guys like him.

  46. Bella says:

    I am a PRC holder,living here for 45 years,i have four adult married children with children,and are Bermudians, so tell me some of you, what are we taking from Bermudians already.

  47. Gotham says:

    Nothing, just that some of us will whine over just about anything.

  48. Bermudian says:

    I am a born Bermudian, I have absolutely no problem with the OBA’s decision not to appeal legislation put in place by the PLP. Many of those opposing their decision really need to look back amongst their own family trees and see where they came from. Last I checked there were no indigenous people on the island when Bermuda was founded.

    The hate that is spewed on this format over the talk radio shows and other social media is destroying this island.

    Sad to say but the PLP and the OBA are in my opinion tearing our island apart, like divorcing adults hell bent on getting their way and in the process the children are scarred and ruined.

    • Unbelievable says:

      ^^^^ This right here. Read it people. It’s the truth. Especially the last sentence.

  49. Kathy says:

    I am sorry to see that ahead of some children who arrived here at a very young age over 40 years ago, some long-term blow ins are going to get status over them.

    It is not right that the human rights of our children are not considered first over people who came here as adults and on work permits knowing that they could not stay.

    I feel sad for some very close friends who deserve better from their own country!

  50. Alvin Williams says:

    This is nothing short of an attempt to store up political support for the Anti-Bermudian one term OBA government. But have no fear my Bermudian people this too will failed.
    They have no more lies to tell; they no longer can buy political support; let us mobilize our people for the political struggle ahead. The three thousand that stayed away in the last election; now that you have felt the lash of this anti-Bermudian government and many now have bitter regret;you can redeem yourselves by forming the political shock troops that will smash this OBA government and consign them to the dust bin of history as they become the first political party that serve only one term as government.

    • James Herald says:

      I’m quite sure there were people who were against the moving of our Capital to a sheltered yet accessible harbour in the middle of our island – how far away and inconvenient it would be to old east end Bermudians.

      I’m quite sure there were people against the releasing of slaves too – that it was bad for our community.

      I’m quite sure there were protests against getting inside toilets and how unsanitary they would be.

      It is called progress Sir, and it is clearly leaving you and the rest of the PLP behind. Thank goodness I’d say.

  51. Hooray. A politician that thinks, acts and gets results. Oh b y the way I am ( i think ) a BORN Bermudian that has red blood but NEUTRAL skin tone and is NON POLITICAL

  52. James Herald says:

    You are incorrect Alvin. With 1400 new voters who will never ever vote PLP (because of PLP’s own actions) PLP will never get back in. And they have nobody but themselves to blame.

    PLP made the law.
    PLP alienated 1400 possible voters.

    Life’s a beach.

  53. Watching On says:

    Well I do hope that now the waiting time for Spouses of a Bermudians to gain status will be shorter too. After all, aren’t they just as valuable as PRCs?

  54. shutthemdown says:

    you come here to work and when you want to start a family you should make your way back home.

    SIMPLE

  55. Starting point says:

    irony is that in 4 years the PLP will campaign saying they created a pathway to citizen ship for PRCs lol.

  56. Robin H says:

    Funny how the UN is sometimes quoted and visited, to justify actions in Bermuda yet we seem to ignore article 21…
    United Nations Declaration on Human Rights
    Article 21.
    •(1) Everyone has the right to take part in the government of his country, directly or through freely chosen representatives