Opinion Column: Bermudians “Doing For Self”

December 22, 2014

[Opinion column written by PLP MP Jamahl Simmons] I started to write about Bermuda and the stunning lack of diversity in our island’s boardrooms.

I started to write about how Bermuda has one of the highest percentages of people of African descent holding college and advanced degrees in the world.

I started to write about how Columbia University Professor Mincy revealed in his “Study of Employment, Earnings and Educational Gaps between Young Black Bermudian Males and Their Same Age Peers” that racism played a more dominant role than education in the success or lack thereof of Black Bermudians.

Then I realized that these points had been rehashed for decades, if not centuries, with little to no positive results.

Without more business leaders willing to take the lead on diversity, strong legislation, or direct incentives, the state of diversity is unlikely to change.

So I decided to write about “Doing for Self.”

With rising unemployment and the threat of massive privatization of the Civil Service, the old adage of “work hard and study hard” no longer provides a guarantee of employment or economic prosperity.

In this new economic climate, we must consider the words of PLP Leader Marc Bean: “Bermudians must cooperate and compete. We must do for self.”

Doing for self involves, but is not limited to:

  • Acquiring education and technical qualifications to create employment for ourselves and others.
  • Cooperating with like-minded members of our community or within our global community to build capital.
  • Identifying goods and service needs within our community and ways that we can provide them to the public.
  • Using our collective buying power to demand better service, better prices and better employment opportunities, including boycotting businesses that engage in price gouging, that treat their employees badly or that do not hire Bermudians
  • Supporting financial institutions such as the BIU Credit Union that have fair lending practices and that give back to the Bermudian community directly through charitable donations or through fair hiring and promotion policies
  • Engaging in honest and fair business practices and treating our employees well.

Here are but a few examples of Bermudians who are doing for themselves:

  • Bailey’s
  • Baxter’s
  • Beauty Day Queen Spa
  • Bernews
  • Building Blocks Construction
  • Ceasar’s Pharmacy
  • Channel 82
  • Chartis Chambers Law firm
  • CN Hair Loft
  • Fish N Tings
  • Greenlite Café
  • Hott 107.5
  • Irie 98.3
  • Junius H. Burrows Plumbing
  • Maxilous Salon
  • Mr. Chicken
  • People’s Pharmacy
  • Smash Table Tennis
  • Soul Food Restaurant
  • Telford Electric

These are prime examples of Bermudians willing to sacrifice short-term gains for long-term goals.

With the America’s Cup 2017 coming to Bermuda, we must position ourselves in a way that no one can deny us a fair and equitable stake in the build-up to and duration of the series of events.

We must also ensure that, as employees, we give a full day’s work for a full day’s pay. Most importantly, we must do all we can to better ourselves. Whether by taking advantage of training opportunities from your employer or through self-study, we must stay on the cutting edge of our chosen professions.

We believe that working to expand fairness and diversity in the workplace should be a priority. Yet as we seek to climb the corporate ladder, we must also encourage and assist Bermudians in their efforts to own the ladder as well.

As Bermudians, we must seek self-determination through self-reliance.

- Jamahl Simmons 

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Comments (63)

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  1. Archie says:

    That’s great – but first of all, we need to remove some of the barriers to setting up businesses or employing someone: who can afford to pay someone’s health insurance when you start a business? Who can afford to pay at least five percent towards a pension when you start a business?
    These are just a couple of examples – and while I agree wholeheartedly with Mr Simmons, words alone will not help.
    The PLP either put these conditions into place or did not remove them (EEZs don’t help much if you are not in them either ….)
    So please, yes, do it for self, but Mr Simmons – you do it for others and get these absurd barriers removed.

    • brain drain says:

      Are these really barriers to setting up a business?

      They are hard fought for employees’ rights. Where in the Western world can you set up a business and not be responsible for the basic welfare of your employees? And that includes health care and pension. If anything, Bermuda is a place that seems to have lower employees rights than a lot of other places (e.g. UK, Canada, Scandinavia)

      Agreed we need to lower the overall cost of health care but placing the burden fully on the shoulders of employees is not the solution. Employers are better equipped to spread that cost even for a handful of employees.

      • Archie says:

        Placing burdens on the employer is not conducive to employing someone – in the UK I would pay my own health insurance and tax. The employer would not be expected to – nor are they seen has hard won workers’ rights – they are the norm.
        You cannot have it both ways

        • Archie says:

          There is no relief from paying payroll tax, no relief from social insurance, no relief from health insurance. Then you have bills: internet, telephone and office/shop rental.
          There is nothing by way of incentive.

        • Huh? says:

          Most places in the Western World have national health care, and the employers still pay benefits on top of that.

          • Archie says:

            You might pay but normally it is through income tax – a one take payment

            • Archie says:

              Anyway, what is wrong with Govt giving people a leg up?

            • Creamy says:

              False. In the UK, for example, there is a deduction called National Insurance.

              • Archie says:

                and here it is called social insurance – but there is no call to pay health insurance and pensiion

                • Creamy says:

                  That’s what UK national insurance pays for.

                  If you start a business you have to pay and insure your employees. If you can’t do that, ypu don’t have a viable business. Government shouldn’t be subsidizing people’s hobbies.

        • brain drain says:

          In the UK healthcare is covered by the NHS as a public service and most private employers provide a healthcare and dental benefit for employees. So not sure where you are getting your information from.

  2. LiarLiar says:

    According to the most recent stats unemployment has actually decreased in the last two years.

    And if you are going to write an article solely about black Bermudians then the title of the article should reflect that, as opposed to the use of the ‘Bermudians’ in the title which implies only black people can be considered to be truly Bermudian.

    This is why I don’t support the divisive PLP.

    • Marge says:

      I do not believe or have any confidence in Jamahl!!!!! and if he did it did not last very long …… and there are quite a few of white Bermudians….. so when you say our people do not exclude us whites…..I have had enough of this man who does not seem to have a clue about how to be inclusive !!!!!!

    • Truth Teller says:

      A true Liar, Liar…there must be truth in advertising.

    • Real Talk! says:

      I noticed that as well but it doesn’t take away from his message.

      Unfortunately it is a cold, hard fact that people of colour have historically been done wrong by in this country-and in many other countries. I don’t think white people will ever truly understand that. They wonder why we harp on the past, but our ancestors worked for free with many of them not able to leave anything to their descendants (us). Meanwhile, as a result of the free labour blacks provided, white people were able to accumulate wealth to pass onto their descendants, who are still benefiting now. That is a wrong that will never be rectified and is colossally unfair.

      Also, blacks were deliberately blocked at every turn from succeeding in this country so that we wouldn’t take anything away from white businesses. The tide has slowly turned but why do black people have to fight, fight, fight for everything that is a God-given right for white people? The stories that our parents and grandparents have told us are horrifying-there are people alive right now who have been treated horribly in this country and NO apology has ever been given-we’re just told to ‘forget about it.’ The races will never truly come together until white people truly try to understand and acknowledge why we feel the way we do.

      Slavery days are over, but slaves told their children stories, and they told their children and so on, right down to today so we know what happened. The same with the days after emancipation where the slaves were physically free but faced a new kind of hell. Those are our fore-parents and we know their stories and they affect us NOW. White people would never say they don’t want the money their great-great-great-great grandparents earned for them, so why should we as blacks be expected to forget the money that we were cheated out of as a result of our great-great-great-great grandparents working for free? No matter how many generations ago these adverse things occurred, they affect us NOW for good or bad…whites take and enjoy the wealth their ancestors gave them but want us to forget the wealth we as blacks were deprived of-you can’t have it both ways. I won’t even get into how many of our ancestors were cheated out of money and land that whites are enjoying now-again, we’re told to just ‘get over it’ yet those same whites would fight you to the death to hold onto their ill-gotten gains. All that kind of stuff just breeds resentment-especially since we’re expected not to talk about it. It’s Bermuda’s dirty, little secret and will never be addressed but don’t think we don’t know or forget because we do know and won’t forget. To forget means it can be repeated and we need to ensure that never happens.

      • LiarLiar says:

        That post of yours has nothing to do with my post above. The one where you seemed to agree with in your very first sentence.

        My post refuted his claim that unemployment has increased dramatically as well as rebutting his ignorant belief, which is rife in the PLP, that only people like him can be truly Bermudian. Your response really has nothing to do with mine and is simply a deflection from the point I made. Almost a justification of his ignorant belief as to what a true Bermudian is.

        And not all whites are benefactors of inheritance with myself being a prime example of that fact. Dad died, got nothing. Mom died, got nothing. That is because of the fact that they could not afford property in Bermuda and lived pay check to pay check like so many others in this overly expensive rock. I know of plenty of black families who have passed down real estate through many generations which in turn has led to many benefits being enjoyed due to the boom in property prices. I rent from a black landlord that owns 3 more houses in our neighborhood that he inherited from his family. And I work in an industry where I see this on a daily basis before you try and say my landlord is an anomaly.

        But hey if stereotyping is your thing, then so be it.

        No one wants to talk about it? That’s all I have ever heard growing up here. That’s all some ever want to talk about. It has been beaten to death in conversation over and over again. So if it was a ‘dirty little secret’ how come so many people, yourself included, know so much about these events?

    • Build a Better Bermuda says:

      That is exactly what the PLP hold too. His notions, while appealing to mass, actually have virtually no bearing in reality. He writes about the righteousness of the BIU, while ignoring the fact they have a horrendous history for financial reporting, having failed a credit union, grocery store and a pension plan. Thanks in no small part to over a decade of neglect to our education system by the PLP, the Bermudian black community will now find the road longer to the fruition of full empowerment within Bermuda’s employment community. While he is correct that in the current climate, a full education background does not garauntee a job, it is an advance and will contribute to a higher pay grade over someone without one. The other important factors towards employment are a professional attitude and personality, a strong work ethic and a willingness to work your way from the bottom up if required.

      The greatest impediment to employment is a sense of entitlement.

      Bermuda has a rich environment of entrepreneurs at the local level, but if we are to truly control our economic destiny, we must work to position ourselves into the power of IB, not just here but globally. I am not talking about our generation as being there, but readying tomorrow’s generation to be there. It is not about doing for self, it is about doing for our children and their children.

      The PLP party politics have always been too narrowed to functioning at a local level, and that is reflected by their inability to better react Bermuda to the global tides that we live in, and Mr. Simmons opinion piece shows that, especialling in his narrowed vision of who a Bermudian is.

    • A patient patient! says:

      Jamahal.
      You have struck a raw nerve!
      Stay on message you have rattled the saber so much that they recruited 86 people up to now to like the nasty comment which is incorrect. The fact is that when white people refer to Bermudians being lazy they are using code language to refer to blacks. Yet when you do it you are wrong. What you have done is irritated white people because you are telling blacks to mobilize against the structure constructively.

      • LiarLiar says:

        No he isn’t

        He is simply peddling the ignorant PLP belief that only black people can be true Bermudians.

        And you can please elaborate on what was ‘nasty’ about my comment above?

  3. Well Said says:

    I don’t think anyone can disagree with your main message, here. The only point I take issue with is “the old adage of “work hard and study hard” no longer provides a guarantee of employment or economic prosperity.” The way the Bermudian workplace is set up, if you are a Bermudian who works hard you are guaranteed employment. The problem is that so many Bermudians do not want to work hard, they want to work for the Government.

    • Triangle Drifter says:

      They want to be on the Government payroll. Fixed it for you.

    • Portia says:

      “The way the Bermudian workplace is set up, if you are a Bermudian who works hard you are guaranteed employment.” Not necessarily. There are many qualified Bermudians who are passed over for jobs/ promotions in favor of non-Bermudians with the perception that they will somehow perform better – which is not always the case. I have seen it countless times in my own line of work.

      “so many Bermudians do not want to work hard, they want to work for the Government.” You need to check your biased perceptions. As someone who has worked in both the public and the private sector, I can attest that there are many Government workers who work extremely hard, some who are filling multiple positions as vacancies go filled in certain departments. I can also attest that there are many workers in the private sector (where I am now) who spend a great part of their day on Facebook or sitting around chatting with friends. It is nonsense to assume that workers in the private are inherently more productive, because they are not. The fact that you are labeling a certain segment of the population with such a broad stereotype is just plain discriminatory.

      • Well Said says:

        It’s not discriminatory if it’s based on fact. The fact is that positions have to be advertised to Bermudians before a work permit can be obtained. The fact is that if there is a qualified Bermudian WILLING to take the job, you cannot get a work permit for a non-Bermudian to fill the role. The problem lies in the ‘willing’ part. This is why you see so many ex-pats in restaurants and hotels.

        As far as productivity, I didn’t actually say anything about the current Government employees, although the average 40+ sick days taken a year speaks volumes. My point is that the Bermudians demanding jobs do not want the jobs that are available, they want Government jobs where they can take unlimited paid sick days and clock out on time every day.

        • Bermewjan says:

          Unless of course you word the work permit in such a way that it only fits the non-Bermudian it was designed for. Then all you have to do is interview a number of Bermudians to meet the CURE and Immigration requirements, then tell them they are not the right fit for the role and… hey presto you get your non-Bermudian work permit. It’s not that hard really, so your first assumption is incorrect… I did not bother to read on as you are clearly poorly informed or simply soap boxing about things you do not understand.

          • Creamy says:

            If a Bermudian fits the role as advertised, what then?

            You have no idea, do you.

          • Mr Stevens says:

            I don’t know about you, but I’d find it extremely hard to word an ad for a waiter or hairdresser or many other jobs so that it only fit a non-Bermudian. Immigration are on to that and obvious examples will see the employer punished and thats not worth the risk. They don’t want Immigration give them a hard time when there is a legitimate need to bring a non-Bermudian in.

  4. Starting Point says:

    it would be hard for Mr. Simmons to understand diversity as it does not exist in his party….until his own party can reflect true bermudian diversity, it has no place to comment on the topic.

    • Jp says:

      PLP can only be diversified if others join…….and they traditionally don’t……

      • Shaka says:

        And the reason they don’t join is because they don’t want to loose the undeserved benefits that has been established by the Oligarchy and be aliented by the Status Quo.

        • Hmmm says:

          Huh????

          So it’s their fault for not joining a part of something which preaches hate against them.

          Erm OK

      • LiarLiar says:

        That’s because traditionally the PLP shuns anyone that doesn’t look like them and speaks about them in derogatory terms. Their intolerance is well documented over the past 50 years.

      • Sandgrownan says:

        Why do think that is?

      • Build a Better Bermuda says:

        By Mr. Simmons opinion piece is a perfect example of why others don’t join the PLP. His entire piece has a mono chromatic view of who is Bermudian, and this is an attitude reflected by the PLP core. The issue of the PLP’s lack of diversity isn’t that others don’t join, it is that their own party philosophy/mentality/judgement isn’t broad enough to allow for diversity.

  5. hmmm says:

    Jamahl, about you go out in Bermuda and Run your OWN business. Stop sitting on a perch and preaching like you have the slightest clue on being successful running a business in Bermuda.

    Currently you are preaching on other peoples dime.

    SMDH

    • GOD1ST says:

      Jahmahl sure is a hypocrite,he hasn’t created not one job ,he ran for C # 33 so that he can get a salary. You summed it up “He is preaching on other peoples dime. “

      • Shaka says:

        Well the Premier is getting THREE salaries do you think he needs $$$

      • Cleancut says:

        He didnt run in #33 it was a hand up, it was given to him. He was on the radio day in and day out selling himself, grasping for sympathy. Eventually people fell for his false rhetoric.

  6. Guy Carri says:

    Hey look – let’s talk about blacks and call them Bermudians and forget about whites!

    Now I don’t know all the companies on that list of examples, but I know several and none of them are white Bermudians. And I KNOW there are examples of white Bermudians out there – they list 2 radio stations and not Vibe (the latest of them all!). Another example is my own company!

    Always about race. Go PLP go.

    • Shaka says:

      Ya well Historically Blacks had to go the extra mile then whites to get established and grants and I don’t think much has changed.

  7. Huh says:

    I started to write about how badly the PLP managed our economy and the Govt. Budget during their 14 year reign of terror. I started to write about how record numbers of Bermudians lost their jobs and homes under the PLP Govt.. I started to write about how the PLP neglected Public Education and let the cost of the Port Royal Golf Course renovations and many other Govt. projects run out of control (Berkeley, TCD, Dockyard, etc.). Then I started to write – Thank God the OBA won in December 2012. So I decided to write about about doing for all of Bermuda. The Americas Cup 2017, medical MJ, Casino gaming, new hotel developments Morgans Point, Ariel Sands, Pink Beach, ending term limits, etc. record # of new companies since 2013 etc….

  8. Sickofantz says:

    I really don’t see how anyone can criticise this piece. Isn’t doing for self what we all do?

  9. Just a matter of time says:

    So from the looks of the majority of the posts here, are we saying that the playing field is truly leveled then? Truly? If so why do we still have this huge racial disparity still in 2014 in the upper levels of our exempted company businesses despite DECADES of “Bermudianization” or whatever term it is called now to supposedly train Bermudians? I wrote sometime back that the expats who come to work in the insurance and reinsurance companies for the most part LEARN ON THE JOB when they land here via the convenient funneling from the accounting firms through audit engagements with various business clients. They mostly do not come here as the insurance experts to teach our young people. I mean aren’t we considered to be one of the top global leaders in this industry? So why isn’t the expertise here already with our own people? It’s upside down. We as Bermudians should already be in these top positions and teaching our own after all this time. But the movers and shakers get to do what they want and hire who they want if we want them to do business here, that’s the cold reality. These folks also like the fun and sun too much and will protect this neat little perk in life by enjoying our island as far as they are able to.

    The shenanigans and tweaking of job descriptions and advertisements to keep foreigners on the island with some eventually turning into PRCs and at the same time block Bermudians have not changed in literally decades. The rules may have changed a bit but the game is still the same. It doesn’t matter what qualifications the Bdian has. All the company has to do is hike up the number of years of experience required or add some additional qualification in the advertisement to match their person already in the job (even though it’s not necessary to actually DO the job) and this greatly increases the chances of no ‘qualified’ Bermudian applying even though they are capable and the job can be done if they too had the same learning opportunity. A real easy goal post shift done by many of these companies which has become an art form in keeping one step ahead of the scrutiny of Immigration while still ‘playing by the rules’. The pool of Bermudians with professional designations or those studying it has thinned drastically over the years in the business sector, no doubt due to discouragement. Sad to see. Even those that so call ‘make it’ still get marginalized.

    I have seen it time and again where Black Bdians are not afforded the same opportunities as their white Bdian or white foreigners in various industries on the island, period. They are not afforded the same networking opportunities where the real opportunities lie. If Bermudians were given the gas allowances and the housing/rent allowances (huge in many cases) and all the other perks given like their foreign colleagues, then yes that’s super encouraging and maybe you will see more commitment like they give. But to work in a job knowing your white colleague gets a valuable rental allowance and you don’t simply because you’re Bermudian is incredibly discriminatory and deflating. No one is dealing with that elephant in the room. So all of these so called opportunities such as the AC, building projects etc currently in the works are all fine on paper but the proof lies as to how much of these opportunities will truly be available to Bermudians, especially black Bermudians. I for one will be watching with a very close lens.

    • Creamy says:

      Total fiction. Bermudians are either running, or are very senior in, most well-established IB companies these days. What you’re describing just is not true.

      • We care says:

        Completely agree! Ace has a Bermudian CEO Rees Fletcher , XL Bermuda has a Bermudian CEO Patrick Tannock, AIG has Anthony Phillips another Bermudian, Arch Bermuda has Terry Pitmental. Darren Johnson is CEO PWC, Gil Tucker was the Managing partner at Ernst and Young.There are also several key Bermudian executives who are running individual business units within these companies that dwarf the size of the Bermuda based banks in terms of revenue and profitability. And yes they are Bermudians both black and white. It’s a complete myth that Bermudians are not the highest levels of IB! get a piece of the action and buy some stock in these companies! There are no restrictions to buying some!

    • Shaka says:

      Its a travesty for Whites to be subservient to Blacks so why don’t you ALL stop beating around the bush and be for REAL .
      That’s the biggest problem too much passive bickering and not addressing the ROOT cause and it’s not a Bermuda problem it’s worldwide.
      America for example have their first Black President and the Tea Partieres want to impeach him for blowing his nose.
      Get Real

      • He’s not the first “black president” :-( He’s of mixed blood and therefore can not be the first black president…

        • Maurorum says:

          Barry is as black as anybody else down here with brown skin. That might make him brown then as are we(fellow brown people). Of course then, brown being an adjective really can’t designate the noun(person, place or a thing), but instead describes a noun.

          Black/Blaec is not a noun and it is incorrect to use it as such. Hamite, Cushite, Mohren, Maure, Moor are more correct terms even indigenous . Blaec(ME) which means bleach out or to make white/pale is the etymon of black. Also, Bermuda is part of the continent of America not the U.S. which is a country. That makes a good deal of us brown folks here Americans especially those imported here from the Northgate mainland long ago as slavs from the Americas.

    • St. Davids says:

      This is a complete crock. I can tell you have no idea what you are talking about. I am Bermudian and I have had to work hard to do well in this industry, and I can tell you from EXPERIENCE, that we would much rather hire Bermudians than foreigners. The simple fact is that these are foreign multi-billion dollar companies, there is no way that there are enough Bermudians that are willing to give their lives to one of these companies……… which is what you have to do to be “in the boardroom”.

      The honest truth is that many Bermudians have chosen not to present themselves in the correct manner, and that makes it that much easier for those that do, to succeed. All these “qualified” Bermudians you speak of may have the degrees, but unfortunately the degree is nothing once you are in the door, you have to work hard, and you have to be a certain type of person, unfortunately not many Bermudians, both black and white, want to work for it. It takes decades, it takes sacrifice, it takes humility, it takes a solid family, it is a career not a job, and there just is not enough of these type of Bermudians to fill these positions. PERIOD.

  10. JUNK YARD DOG says:

    “You are, what you are going to be!”

  11. PANGAEA says:

    B. H. C. is a classic example where it all went wrong.

  12. JUNK YARD DOG says:

    The Ratio between work and pay is about 0ne to Eight being the reason why two very prominent businesses failed.

  13. Island Girl says:

    I have to give credit to Minister Simmons for this article. I am not a PLP supporter but his point is valid. Bermudians need to do what they can to move forward whether through furthering your education/qualifications or looking for ways/opportunities to start your own business and employ Bermudians. This will make us not overly dependent on the bigger industries in this country. There are extremely bright Bermudians out there, they just need some motivation like this article. These are the type of ideas and advice I would like to see from the PLP. Empower and motivate Bermudians to look after each other. Bermudians who have made it in the corporate world or in their own business look out for up and coming black Bermudians and mentor them.

  14. Mr Sparkle says:

    Hey Jamahl, What happened to all of the business that are NOT owned by “African descent” Bermudians who are “doing it for themselves”?

    When are you and your party going to work on being color blind?

    I am sick of this racist code nonsense – its petty, proves a lack of maturity and will only continue to hold Bermuda back…. all of Bermuda.

  15. average white OBA bermudian says:

    fools

  16. Just a matter of time says:

    Oh Creamy. You really are living in your own bubble. If what you assert is truly the case, why are the employee demographics of the lack of Bdian vs non Bdian still the same in the lucrative areas if not worse over the last several decades? I never said there were no Bermudians working in any of these positions. Never. I was one of them. So stop being misleading. In 2014 the numbers are still few and this is still an upside down approach to supposedly embracing our own. Ok so you have the few success stories (emphasis on few) who so call ‘make’ it. Because that in itself is a relative term, ‘making it’. And if there are so many Bermudians in middle to higher management as you claim (not operational and administrative, plenty of Bdian females there, few if any still with no housing allowances though) then the numbers should be better since they should be focusing on our own. But the foreigner usually gets in first and you know it.

    I am an accounting professional in the field I know what I am talking about. I know first hand of job description and advert tweaking with ridiculous requirements to keep the foreigner in the position and the Bermudian out. I know first hand of eager young foreign accountants who come here to work with absolutely NO knowledge of insurance and reinsurance and learn this trade on the job here on this island through audit engagements working in auditing firms and then easily get hired by one of the same clients they audited with the new knowledge and skill sets acquired (Thank you Bermuda!). Seen it plenty of times. And for non-business, I know of foreigners who have come here on temporary construction contracts being given handsome housing allowances while their Bermudian colleagues getting a lesser wage struggle. I even know of Bermudians unable to even get an office cleaning job with many of these companies with the many foreigners there. I know of foreign maids/cleaners/nannies who live better than Bermudians housesitting million dollar homes which are barely occupied throughout the year, while Bermudians struggle being piled on top of one another in the same home. As a young person today, I can imagine it’s discouraging to see and question your own future prospects. No wonder many who go overseas to study are not coming back or are reluctant to if they don’t have options. Of course this creates a vacuum of Bermudian talent and voila! The foreigner now becomes a key person. I know what I am talking about. So yes, doing for self and creating a new mindset of self empowerment is the way to go.

    • serengeti says:

      There are dozens and dozens of Bermudian success stories. Among the longer established companies, it’s hard to find ones where Bermudians aren’t running the place or in the senior management.

      But that’s all the PLP stands for these days. Right-wing racist nationalist anti-foreigner lies.

  17. Bermuda and the PLP should be well advised of African Diaspora Maritime (www.ADMSailing.com).

    The team has nearly 20 years and a very expensive lawsuit, waged in the New York State Supreme Court and Appellate Court, invested in becoming a professional sailing team to compete for the America’s Cup and other professional sailing trophies. It was treated unfairly during the registration process for the 34th America’s Cup as determined by the New York State Appellate Court First Department. After over 2.5 years in court a settlement was reached in which, “GGYC, which will again defend the Cup in the 35th America’s Cup, is fully supportive of ADM’s stated mission, which is: (a) to participate in local, national, and international competitive sailing events and maritime activities, including, but not limited to the America’s Cup; (b) to train young African-Americans as competitive race sailors; (c) to teach the math and science behind hi-tech sailing as well as the role of African-Americans in maritime history; and (d) to serve as a role model by raising awareness of sailing not only in the African-American community but also in America generally.”

    Bermuda would generate the most economic impact and benefit for its community and the African Diaspora if it were to have a fully-integrated America’s Cup team or exhibition team.

    Bermuda is a microcosm in the Atlantic where economic divide, racial relations, climate change, ocean health, and other systemic breakdowns can play out for the benefit of the greater good or for those who benefit from exclusion. I hope Bermuda and Bermudians set an example of taking the high road during the run to the America’s Cup. The stage for fairness and diversity has been set. This is your opportunity to use it as a springboard.

  18. ProudBermudian says:

    I am confused and saddened by this article. The company I work for would do anything to attract more Bermudians, but of all those we interview, so many of them have degrees that aren’t worth anything – the underlying grades are just not sufficient to enable them to work in our industry or to gain a further qualification. That is white and black Bermudians.

    Statistics are that there are more black young people than white, and we’re a wealthy country so we have more college graduates that other countries may. So this seems a bit sensationalist.

    I agree that as young Bermudians we should help ourselves, but this is all Bermudians. I’m not so blind that I think that there is no race bias out there, I’m just saying that I’ve never come across it in my career to date, that’s all. I do think that employers need to be sensitive to certain senior employees hiring people that “look like them” and maybe this is why articles like this can continue to be written. Again, I just don’t believe there should ever be race (or gender for that matter) bias. The best person should get the job. Period.

  19. As Family Center states: “Be the change that starts the change.”

  20. Sara says:

    Living in Bermuda for the last 7 years as a spouse of Bermudian it seems there are a few areas I notice could provide improvement in the employment area. I acknowledge everything in the article to be true and in certain instances of workplace racism there isn’t much that can be done unless you start your own business. However, what Bermudians can control is work ethic and career choice. A good work ethic needs to be pounded into children’s heads from an early age and while there are a copious amount of hardworking Bermudians I personally see work ethic to be an Achilles heel to many. I also notice that many Bermudians don’t choose certain career paths that are needed in Bermuda. I understand you can’t force people into a career but at some point one must be realistic with the fact that there are a limited number of career opportunities on this island especially in this economic climate. My advice to people in Bermuda headed to college would be make certain your career choice will lead to a job at least as back up.