MP Brown Calls On The Reefs To Withdraw Ad‬

January 19, 2015

“The recent ad by The Reefs hotel represents a flawed direction in the hiring process and needs to be stopped immediately,” Shadow Minister for Immigration ‬Walton Brown said, with the MP calling on The Reefs to “withdraw the ad immediately.”

This follows after the Southampton property advertised for a Bar Chef to “develop a new cocktail menu and train our bartenders,” with the advertisement saying it is a “non paid position in exchange for a week of room and board.”

Shadow Minister for Immigration ‬Walton Brown said, “The recent ad by The Reefs hotel represents a flawed direction in the hiring process and needs to be stopped immediately.

“To publish an ad seeking an employee to work without monetary compensation and for merely ‘room and board’ is an affront to us all and is certainly not the behavior expected from one of our highest profile hotel properties, moreover, one owned by the chairman of the Bermuda Tourism Authority.

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

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

In response, The Reefs General Manager Nagma Walker said, “We would like to clarify some of the questions around our recent ad for a Bar Chef.

“We are currently in the process of redesigning our restaurant and bar concept. During our discussions we wanted to further develop our Bermudian bartenders. We explored a few options including sending some overseas for training; it made more economical sense to train them all on site.

“Our Executive Chef worked with a renowned Bar Chef, who offered to come in for a few days to do this in exchange for room and board. We contacted immigration and were advised to advertise for this position.

“We welcome any qualified Bar Chef on the island to contact us if they are interested in this short term opportunity to train and develop Bermudians.

“To emphasize, the goal of these few days is to develop and train our current Bermudian bartenders which we hope will create an enhanced bar and lounge experience for our guests here and overseas.

“The Reefs is and always has been committed to the development of Bermudians,” added Ms. Walker.

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Comments (77)

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  1. Jus' Askin' says:

    What’s OBA’s and BTA’s view on this? ;-)

    • Sad says:

      Not too sure they will be against training of Bermudians.

      Did you read their response?

      • Jus' Askin' says:

        Where is OBA’s or BTA’s response?

        • lucky 7 says:

          They have important things to get done….like running the country and fixing the mess from ‘Pathetic Liars Party’……this is article is petty BS. (Yawn).

    • Sad says:

      On top on that the OBA Govenment confirmed to the Reefs that even though this job was only for a few days that they were still required to advertise. Hence the ad.

      If Mr. brown would’ve enquiries first instead of the usual shooting off their mouths as a means to create unfounded controversy this demand and silly press release would have never come about.

      • Lawry says:

        Not the OBA that would have made any such decision; decision to advertise would have been dictated by the civil servants/Chief Immigration Officer, assuming Reefs did not do so on their own volition. Regardless, here is a hotel aiming to expand/improve their offerings having to deal with this utter nonsense – no small wonder the smart money is still not all that interested in investing here.

    • REAL deal says:

      My fellow Bermudians.

      Functional Unity – David Dodwell = Reefs = BTA = America Cups Board Member

      It all adds up to OBA Functional Unity.

      Family, 3 more years of OBA’s Functional Unity = no jobs for our Bermudian Educated Children.

      OBA Functional Unity = jobs for the privileged only.

      OBA Functional Unity = advancement for 95% Whites 5% Blacks

      • Kangoocar says:

        Right on Que!!! Out comes the racial nonsense??? Your racial views have obviously blinded you from the fact, that Bermudians that work at the Reefs, actually have a chance to better themselves!!! You make me sick!!!!!

      • Hmmm says:

        People need to lean to read…wow REAL deal….Where was the ad for singer billboard artist for when Beyonce came down. I didn’t see it.

        This sounds more like an opportunity came about which will enhance the skillset of Reefs barstaff.

        Same sort of thing as when visiting Footballers take a coaching session or two.

        I’ll call the Chelsea guys and tell them not to bother !!!!!!

      • Lawry says:

        No small wonder the place is still going to hell in a handbag; it’s a shame they really are not out to get you bro, regardless you’re doing a great job getting yourself.

      • Mirror says:

        Real Deal – common sense + stings = PLP puppet

        PLP puppet = dysfunctional racist

        dysfunctional racist = no job + blames someone else = Real Deal

        • Cleancut says:

          This is a great opportunity for a professional from overseas to take advantage of this all expenses paid vacation.

          But, as usual our renowned ex-pat bashing always seems to bubble to the surface.

      • Simon Templar says:

        Anyone that can spot BS can see you coming from a mile away.

    • Build a Better Bermuda says:

      The reefs are looking for someone for 1 week to train their Bermudian staff with a new fresh flair that will be unique to the rest of the island… and the job isn’t going to pay anything. Hey, it would be great to find a local that can do this, but how many mixologists on this island will take this job, honestly, the few that could meet this position are already hired. They are not looking for a bartender, they are looking for an instructor that can provide a flair that isn’t currently on this island. Their options… send their staff away, in which case they would need to send them off in probably 2 or more trips at greater cost; or bring someone in where they can be trained onsite in live situations in their own bar layout.

      Seriously, where is the loss to Bermudians here.

    • Need more be said? :-(
      “Our Executive Chef worked with a renowned Bar Chef, who offered to come in for a few days to do this in exchange for room and board. We contacted immigration and were advised to advertise for this position.
      “We welcome any qualified Bar Chef on the island to contact us if they are interested in this short term opportunity to train and develop Bermudians.
      “To emphasize, the goal of these few days is to develop and train our current Bermudian bartenders which we hope will create an enhanced bar and lounge experience for our guests here and overseas.
      “The Reefs is and always has been committed to the development of Bermudians,” added Ms. Walker

  2. Creamy says:

    Maybe Walton Brown can sponsor the Bermudians involved to go overseas to get the training.
    That’s how the PLP would do it, presumably. Go overseas, spend money overseas, and do things the inefficient high-cost way. No real surprise there.

  3. damn.... says:

    Let the Reefs find someone who is highly qualified and can train BERMUDIAN bartenders so that they can use this knowledge to perform and train other Bermudians. All you are doing is trying to draw attention to yourself so you look like you are doing something but at the same time making progress difficult for others. SHUSH!

  4. Kangoocar says:

    More nonsense from brown/plp!!! Back 20+ yrs ago when I was in the retail business, sales reps that my company purchased merchandise from, and that included the U.S. and Europe, Would routinely fly in ( with immigration approval of course ) and hold product knowledge meetings with our sales staff and my company did NOT PAY THEM!!!! So what is the difference???? Those meetings enhanced my sales staff knowledge which in turn made them sell more, thus keeping them employed!!!! Just more proof that the plp, STILL DONT HAVE A CLUE ABOUT HOW AN ECONOMY WORKS??? The more knowledgeable/good, the local staff are at their job, the safer their jobs are!!! DUH!!!!!!!!! What part of this is to train the BERMUDIAN staff, did the plp/brown miss?????

    • Longtail says:

      The PLP proved time and time again that they had no clue how to run a business (let alone a government!!!) Walton has only proved that they are still completely out of touch and would still govern by scaremongering if they had the chance.

    • Days in the East says:

      Soooooo what is your take on the OBA pulling Craig back into the house?????

      • Kangoocar says:

        House??? I think you mean Cabinet??? I will honestly say if I was Premier I would have not done it!!!! But may I ask what your take on the plp taking back ROBAN within six months of him doing very questionable KNOWN things such as giving planning approval to fellow cabinet members which totally went against what the cival service were advising him to do???? I am sure I will only hear ” tree frogs ” from you on that won’t I ?????

  5. stunned... says:

    help me see the problem please. the Reefs wants someone to create a new menu and train Bermudians in the process. the consideration of room and board at the Reefs is not insignificant. If someone likes those terms than let them go for it. sounds to me to be creative thinking. kudos to the Reefs and Walton needs to stop creating issues where there are none. we already have too many, as it is.

    nobody is taking jobs, training for Bermudians is guaranteed, it’s a very short time frame…seriously what is the problem?

    • Micro says:

      Precisely, if someone accepts that as a form of payment then so be it.

      In the amateur photography/modelling industry, many would work for “free” for perks like that in a country/region they wanted to visit.

  6. Keepin' it Real!...4Real! says:

    this is clearly not for a bermudian position…it is a position to bring new ideas to bermudians…one week training thats it…what bermudian would sign on for a week…what bermudian is already qualified to teach new lessons..?? otherwise they wouldnt have done what they did…

  7. truthhertz says:

    My question is why Mr. Brown and his fellow BDA College board members gave away Stonington to a foreigner who in turn axed the hospitality school that was used by umpteen locals as a springboard into the tourism industry. The next question is why the proprietor of that hotel hasn’t had to pay any fees as of yet? I believe it had something to do with operating income levels.

    Now that is a contract worthy of the auditor general’s scrutiny. Be interesting to see who is a director of the hotels company and which MP refused to.disclose their interest

    • Hmmm says:

      Yes Mr Brown, please tell us about that, we want to know !

      • Triangle Drifter says:

        But but but, all of that is in the past. Everyone is supposed to forget about anything questionable that happened in the recent very memorable past.

  8. Keepin' it Real!...4Real! says:

    save money by bringing one person to train 20 bermudians by way of room n board or send 20 bermudians away at an exuberant cost to be trained by one person…where is the logistics in that..?

    lots of bermudians suffering from barking dog syndrome i know that!

  9. sebring says:

    This should not be allowed they can very well afford to train over seas who ever they like at 22 dollars for nachos and 9 dollar guacamole dip from the dairy department Hell !!!!! am with you on this!!! PLP starting to make sense Scary!!!!!!!!!

    • Hmmm says:

      So all the flights and accomodations makes financial sense to you leaving the Reefs without bar staff too?

      ps No more guest lecturers, no overseas trainers, no rugby clinics or soccer clinics with outside knowledger providers, no more knowledge sharing aloud under the PLP is it????

      Your guest speakers at your next PLP Party trough filler has just been cancelled. Good work Walton. I guess you’ll fill in won’t you.

      • sebring says:

        you know I am sorry you are right they do need all the help they can get!!!!

  10. Infidelguy says:

    Why is it that everything in this country has to be politized? For F sakes, this person is only going to be here for a few days to enhance the skills of Bermudian bar tenders at the Reefs. Does every damn thing in this country have to be viewed through a political lense?

    This kind of petty politics will eventually bring this country to its knees!

  11. Terry says:

    More propaganda from the Wanna Be Waltons.
    You guys just don’t get it.
    Fruit and trees.
    Walton and Captain Starling have an agenda.
    Seen this in other coutries

    Anything to bring Bermuda to it’s knees and say I told you so.

    Well I am telling you so. Back off.
    The Government is NOT OBA.
    The Government is the One Bermuda Alliance and the Progressive Labor Party.

    Anyone home besides your work computer?

  12. Terry says:

    Reminds me of the Waltons.
    Good night…………………………..

  13. mixitup says:

    I think the point is that you don’t want to set a precedent of manipulating job ads just for the sake of saying you advertised
    These rules are in place to ensure locals have a genuine first shot at the opportunity. Maybe there is a local with the skills they are looking for. I don’t see the free room and board as an indication that they were looking for a local though.

    • Double Standards says:

      Neither were they looking for a full time post.

    • stunned... says:

      there we go again Bermudians claiming to know what other Bermudians will or won’t do…sad! why couldn’t a Bermudian Bar chef who could be having a staycation be interested in room and board at the Reefs while training his fellow Bermudians for one week? FFS, when are we open up up minds to let some fresh air in?

      • stunned... says:

        oops…slow down. FFS, when are we going to open up our minds to let some fresh air in?

      • mixitup says:

        Whe could go around the ‘What if’ Mulberry Bush all day. What if the Ad was worded better, then there would be no what if’s? It was a poorly put together advert that leaves a lot of questions. Don’t beat up anyone for questioning it.

    • Build a Better Bermuda says:

      They have someone who was willing to come in and provide a service, and was willing to do so for only room and board. My assumption to this is that he wouldn’t mind a light vacation here, even if he has to work a little, but doesn’t want to get paid, because then he has to deal with his home country tax declaration. This way the Reefs gets to freshen up the bar menu and staff, and the bar chef gets to see Bermuda.

      Now… Here is the important details… The only reason it was advertised in the paper was because the Reefs did the correct thing and checked with immigration, and were told to advertise it, so they did and advertised exactly what was being offered. Mr. Brown is apparently telling the Reefs to disobey the immigration department… And why, well because he felt it was more important to try and make them look bad, than get the facts.

  14. tom cooke says:

    My former wife while in England at university worked for one year with NO pay. She received time in a studio on a Saturday on her own time. There were 50 plus people after that same position. …

  15. MB says:

    Here we go again, with the pathetic moaning
    and attacking of the one industry that we have
    that has potential to grow and give us jobs. Just
    listen to yourselves, reading a whole pile
    of rubbish into an ad. The very fact they
    advertised this shows they have nothing to hide,
    it is stupid Bda Immigration policies and red tape that caused
    this not The Reefs. Instead of some bright spark
    on the civil service saying you know what, let them
    do this, it is not really a paid job thus does not involve is
    it just needs a temp visitor permit, they decide to put a respected hotel through this. And then the PLP, their
    talk radio show and all of you jump on board like this is taking jobs from Bermudians. The only thing taking jobs from Bermudians
    is a refusal to step up, work hard and be nice and service oriented.

    • Danny says:

      The last I checked, the majority of the service staff in restaurants and bars hailed from somewhere other than Bermuda.

      • Billy Mays says:

        Not bartenders. Check again, Mr. expert.

      • Creamy says:

        Wouldn’t it be a good idea to allow Bermudians to receive training then?

    • Terry says:

      Ditto MB.

  16. Ronnie Viera says:

    It is outrageous that the Reefs, which has so many long term Bermudians employed by them, would want to now train & develop young Bermudians in new bar techniques and drinks! Also, how dare a non-Bdn try to do this without payment.

    Seriously Walton, instead of blasting off to the press next time for political points you could try to get the facts from the company involved. By doing so, you can be taken more seriously when there is a genuine immigration issue!

  17. Bermuda123 says:

    Well done to The Reefs for both developing their product and training Bermudians. The mistake here was by the Immigration Dept requiring an ad. Based on the facts as presented, it should not have been necessary and would have avoided all of this aggravation. If The Reefs was run by someone not committed to Bermuda, they would have run for the hills after this. Result – no product development and no upskilling of the Bermudian staff. Get real.

    • Tony says:

      It is well known that Immigration will do all in their power to make things difficult for non-Bermudians to come in.

      No different to Immigration at the airport. Two staff for locals, two or three for visitors, one for guest workers. So blatant it’s embarrassing.

  18. Y-Gurl says:

    This is a stupid Brown complaint, this guy whines at everything before looking at the facts

  19. Truedat says:

    There are no bar chefs in Bermuda there is more to it than popping a cork and pulling a cap let someone train our people

  20. Rick Olson says:

    I am looking for the same to upgrade both my bar and wait staff at Bermuda Bistro please contact me .

  21. Chaos Theory says:

    Quite sad by Walton Brown. So much promise, so little follow through.

    If you want pick a fight with the OBA, at least find one that has some legs and at least a modicum reality.

    So sad, so sad that this is what you resort to.

  22. swing voter says:

    what a tacky ad….could have been written beter

  23. ahaaa says:

    How was this ad discriminatory???….. i could see no such comment indicating discrimination. Again this government is fanning the flame.They did not say that Bermudians could not apply???

    Foreigners are unable to apply as it is against the conditions of their existing contracts, given you are unable to work for another employer. So that rules out foreign applicants. They will not be flying foreigners in either. So who does that leave to fulfill such a position…a Bermudian. I again ask how was it discriminatory ??? Does the PLP even know what the word means??

    Look they need someone for a brief time to design a menu…..they presumably dont want to pay because they are unable too. Times are tough, have you noticed? God i only saved $5000.00 dollars last month…normally i save $7-$8000

    Would you pay a consultant “cocktail maker” a consultancy fee for 1 week to have them make your drink menu… at $200 an hour for 35 hours.”NO way”
    No local is worth that amount of money. Heck i’d download the recipes from the internet myself , test them on some willing drinkers for free and i would not need to hire someone. Reefs dump the add, dont hire a local, do the above and save yourself the headache

  24. navin johnson says:

    A classic Bermuda makes a mountain out of a molehill or should I say ….PLP makes a mountain out of a molehill…..listening to this story on the news it sounds laughable….Hey Mike would you come to Bermuda for a few days to work with my bartenders? sure..I will pay you…no thats ok just give me a room and board for a few days…this will now be knows as Bartendergate…give it a rest..more important fish to fry….

  25. Valirie Marcia Akinstall says:

    Very smart and sleek, the ‘renowned Bar Chef’ is offered the opportunity to go to Bermuda to ‘train’ Bermudian bartenders.

    The Bar Chef learns about island specialty cocktails from Bermudian bartenders, mixes a few that he has learnt about at other exotic locations, comes back to London to unveil his new exotic island cocktails.

    Very nice gig…for a few days…to teach bartenders what they already know.

    Enter Bermudian bartenders in the ‘best bartenders’ competitions in London, you may be pleasantly surprised at who takes the crown and what exotic island drinks ‘Bar Chefs’ crave to learn how to mix.

    London, England

  26. BogglesDeMind says:

    Frankly, it just sounds like the Reefs got bad advice from Immigration. Most companies would have simply brought in a ‘consultant’ for ‘meetings’ with staff, obtained a letter of permission from Immigration for that. How that consultant is compensated is a matter between the company and the individual. Walton is spouting sound and fury… but as usual, it signifies nothing (of substance).

  27. Walker says:

    In actuality what will happen is he’ll come in for “one week” and they’ll apply for one extension after the other until he’s here for many more weeks, then months, then years. This ad is just to get him on the island and his paperwork in the system. There are locally employed mixologists that can do this very well and would be willing to accept the free accommodations and perks that remain untold for this great opportunity. Don’t be fooled people.

    • Island Girl says:

      Sooooo, what’s/where’s the problem??? If we have a local of required calibre, what’s stopping him/her from applying, as the ad invites.

  28. Ricko Chez says:

    Every company I have ever worked for in the last forty years has had foreign people come down to Bermuda for a few days to train people at our expense. They need a permit yes – but never ever were the jobs advertised. The Reefs merely carried out what they were told to do by Immigration.

    PLP is grasping at this cos they have nothing else to stand on. Nothing ele to moan and complain about.

    This is how pathetic PLP has become. How embarrssing for all their members. A party of such former greatness, now in death throws.

    RIP PLP

  29. Tony says:

    Can we please get an apology from Walton Brown, and a promise that next time he will uncover the facts before shooting his mouth?

  30. Wondering says:

    Will the Bermudians be qualified or certified after the training? Or will we have to keep bringing in an Executive Bar chef to teach at other establishments? Will they then be able to go on and teach at Mr. Olsen’s Bermuda Bistro? I suggest Mr. Olsen wait out the week that the chef is coming to train Bermudians & then hire one of the newly trained Bermudians to teach his staff for a week. He could use his vacation time or a leave of absence to teach at Bistro if we really have Bermudians welfare in mind.

    • Seen says:

      What does this all have to do with Rick Olson or his bar?

  31. Cow Polly says:

    “To publish an ad seeking an employee to work without monetary compensation and for merely ‘room and board’ is an affront to us all”

    LOL! I always love the way the PLP speak for ‘all of us’ when they’re trying to stir up trouble. Well this Bermudian is not ‘affronted’ at all, in fact I applaud the Reefs and this skilled gentleman for upgrading the skills of Bermudian bartenders in an innovative way.

  32. aceboy says:

    Much ado about nothing. Classic PLP.

  33. Cleancut says:

    Mr. Brown.

    Guess what are the three (3) most important application forms being collected by our PRC’s right now?

    1. BOTC form.
    2. Bermuda Status form.
    3. Voter Registration form.

  34. Naive Observer says:

    Someone please help Walton get his foot out of his mouth…..

  35. Sandgrownan says:

    The Reefs should “call on” Walton Brown to STFU.

    Even by their standards, this example of a PLP “Outrage du jour” is pretty weak. Looking forward to the next hilarious installment of “PLP express concern about….”

  36. stunned... says:

    i have to believe that the attention seeking WB is just chuckling away at all the response he is receiving to his latest idiocy. he knows as we do that this is just political mischief.

    strongly recommend that he gets the silent treatment where no one responds to his next outburst which will be soon because as I’ve read, “…but the fire to speak burns in some men (Ps 39:1-3). They cannot quench this fire; they cannot reduce the heat; they cannot rule the impulse; they must talk, now! What a curse to have an unruly mouth and tell everyone within hearing distance that you are a fool. Close your mouth, and even though you truly are one, none but you will know it!…”

  37. ImJustSayin says:

    Why don’t Mr. Brown get the facts before shooting off his mouth..

  38. Vhovho says:

    I am sick and tired of some lazy Bermudians who think everything comes on a silver platter. Wake up, get up and start making yourself better instead of waiting for someone else to do it for you. The world is very competitive out there and sure enough things are not handed over to you, you have to go and get them. Reefs has to do what is best for their company. Why don’t you get your own business? Yes I am Bermudian and I support OBA….SO WHAT!!! and I am black just in case you want to bring in racial slurs…..da

  39. Northshore says:

    Awesome idea “REEFS” well done in the forward thinking dept.! This is something the PLP/BIU/PC simply cannot fathom!
    And as always there is the PLP putting the cart before the horse, (AGAIN) !! Really, Walton,,,,

  40. Sickofantz says:

    If the PLP and Walton Brown REALLY cared about Bermudians they would not bother raising hell about this ridiculous issue.