May 13: Reduced Bus/Ferry Due To BIU Meeting

May 10, 2013

[Updated] All Bermuda Industrial Union [BIU] Government Workers are invited for an urgent meeting on Monday [May 13] at 10am at 7th Day Adventist Church Hall on King Street on Hamilton. The agenda of the meeting is Government Negotiations. The Government and BIU have agreed that skeleton crews for Marine & Ports and Public Transportation will be working during the meeting.

Meeting Notice-page-001

Update 4.20pm: The Department of Public Transportation and the Department of Marine and Ports have advised that due the meeting scheduled for May 13th between 10 a.m. and 12 p.m. there will be limited bus and ferry services.

They will operate a reduced service in order to minimize the impact to the travelling public with full service expected to resume by 1 p.m. The reduced schedule for the day is here [PDF]

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Comments (97)

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  1. OMG says:

    Well thank the lord they will have “skeleton crews” working – they probably will work harder than the normal crews!!! :)

    • Silence Do Good says:

      Ok everyone
      I started reading the comments and found out where they are going…Bash BIU, Strikes etc. Calm down…it is simply a meeting to discuss government negotiation. Government has asked all unions to negotiate as one unit. To make this happen all of the unions have to meet with their respective member and get approval for this to happen. The BIU like all other unions in BDA have the right to meet with their membership and get direction. Stop panicking and making a mountain out of mole hill.

  2. Edmund Wells says:

    Are BIU members paid their normal salaries and wages by Government while they are attending Union meetings that have been called during regular working hours? If so, is that a right explicitly provided for in their contracts?


  3. la la dy says:

    Hmmmmmmmmmm. Meeting two days before the Breakaway arrives. The private sector better get their shuttles and taxis ready just in case.

    • Party Planners says:

      Is there anyone out there that can quickly start a website, Facebook or Twitter site where we can organize the public to assist with transportation for our visitors before the great self serving BIU ruins another year.

      My wife and I are not working next week and would love to drive our vistors around for free to ensure the BIU do not cripple another Tourism season.

      Can anyone confirm that I won’t be breaking the law by doing this as long as we don’t charge for the service!?

      • Mad Dawg says:

        As long as you accept no payment you can take anyone you want in your car.

        • Confused..... says:

          So if this is illegal then why are the gypsy cabs allowed to park illgally outside marketplace and hog parking in shopping center. Security and managers know them (even have long chats with them while waiting for people) and they definitely except money… Keep in mind I have yet to see parking ladies ticket them. they are just told to move.

          • Zombie Apocalypse says:

            Gypsy cabs are illegal. They pick people up and charge them a fare for taking them somewhere. That is illegal. They have no valid insurance and no licence to do what they do.

            However, if you pick someone up and give them a lift for free, that is perfectly legal.

          • Mad Dawg says:

            Gypsy cabs are illegal. Giving a lift to a tourist is fine.

    • CBA says:

      It’s unbelievable that this government is actually entertaining the Union. The last government had to because of votes, but the Union has made it clear that they hate this new government (the one that actually knows how to run a country without daily controversy). This new government needs to take advantage of the poor economic conditions in the world in order to take away any power the Union actually has. We need to have people from overseas on call so the government can fire scores of people who strike and replace them immediately. After a couple months of this (and putting up with the noise) the Union would be so broke it would not be able to function, and people would no longer see the value in Union membership. It needs to be done.

    • collins says:

      we need the regiment to drive the buses if these fools stage a strike …..what I do not understand is these ferry and bus operators go on strike when these cruise ships come in do they not care what will happen to this Island ? members of the BIU YOU ARE BEING USED FOR THE POWER OF A FEW….
      OBA please put an end to this union “by any means neccesary ” enough is enough.

  4. wow !Just when the summer season is about to start, the amazing Cris Furbert is about to pull a superise out of his hat?? I smell a strike coming up ,giving the history of the union having strikes every year, why break tradition..

  5. Bermyman says:

    Looks like they are getting ready to kick up about the SAGE commission.

  6. SoMuchMore says:

    wow, for once he’s giving notice. is he well? but really couldn’t this have been done before and NOT during the season.

    chris, the breakaway arrives wed and on mon we have 2 ships in, wake up will you. dont destroy whats left of our tourism industry.

  7. mark hinton says:

    Notice or not this kind of B.S. is illegal and nobody is ever held accountable the only union members that should be attending these meetings are the shop stewards and just once it would be nice if they did it during their lunch

  8. LaVerne Furbert says:

    What were the comments like when the Government Negotiating team requested a meeting with the BPSU membership? Did anyone question if the BPSU members were being paid? Am I understanding that it’s okay for “white collar” workers to meet, but not blue collar workers?

    • Pickup says:

      Laverne – with all due respect, the general public have zero sympathy or respect for the WAY that the BIU does anything. You can not compare the way that any other group does anything. The BIU (in recent years) has broken every rule, striked for drivers and captains under the influence, called strikes and marches whenever they felt like and left our visitors , children and seniors stranded. Your books were TEN YEARS plus behind and I’m sure still not up to date. So, if you believe that you are the all powerful BIU and ABOVE the LAW, then accept the fact that you are not beyond severe criticism from the general public.

    • SoMuchMore says:

      Laverne, shudddd up will you, give it a break.

      • collins says:

        Lavern, as you know most right thinking people in bda think you are an @#$ %^&* all but one talk show host, so maybe it is time for you retire from your job and enjoy life with out all of your hatred…..

    • Party Planners says:

      Makes me want to Boycott all things BIU and the businesses renting space in their building. I was going to Liberty to see Iron Man 3 but I think I will pass now. I will save the money to pay for gas so I can take a few tourists around on Monday.

      • SoMuchMore says:

        party planners. im lol’ing. too cute

      • Building a better Bermuda says:

        I had a day off and was fully planned to go see Iron Man 3 too, then I saw where it was playing. The quality of movie experience there is one of the worst on the island to begin with, but the notion of supporting the BIU in anyway after the last decade+ means I will not go to a movie there anytime soon.

        Good idea, save the money to help ferry tourist around when the BIU decides to screw the country for another year running.

      • RawOnion says:

        I have not been to The Liberty Theatre nor the BIU gas station in 2 years. As long as the BIU keep up their way of crippling this island, I will never set foot onto any business run by them.

    • Mad Dawg says:

      So why don’t they meet over the weekend, Lavvy?

    • Hey says:

      So are the BIU meeting with the SAGE commission on Monday Laverne?

      • LaVerne Furbert says:

        That meeting was held a few Mondays ago.

  9. Verbal Kint says:

    Here we go!!!

  10. LaVerne Furbert says:

    I just checked, there was only one comment when notice of the BPSU meeting was called.

    • Bermuda Male says:

      That’s because their meeting was held after work hours and didn’t inconvenience thousands of taxpayers.

      • Douglas says:

        LOL! Ooops Mrs. Furbert, I think he has you there. LOL

    • Come Correct says:

      I just checked, you’re still commenting on bernews after you said you wouldn’t pre election 2012. Last I checked the BPSU wasn’t taking any and every chance to cripple the tourism we have left. Just keep calm….and carry on/belly flop off AH peak.

      • Hey rat says:

        Last I checked you was sitting home smoking weed you dumb F@K. Go look for a job. It’s night and day now.

        • Come Correct says:

          Last I checked I still furthered my education while I was unemployed smoking weed and I do work now so sit on a lobster whip and spin pu$$. Sucks when people are better than you huh? Check that.

    • Mad Dawg says:

      Last I checked, everyone hates the BIU for sabotaging the tourism industry. If they pull that sh1t this week there will be hell to pay. Bunch for effin wankers.

    • SoMuchMore says:

      Laverne, that’s because the bpsu is sensible. the biu isn’t. heller.

  11. Marie says:

    Eventhough clarification about the new ferry situaiton was given earlier this year; many of the Marine and Ports workers are still upset over the idea. On Tuesday of this week, they had an interdepartmental meeting in Dockyard to discuss this matter and to share their frustrations. Some of the workers are even showing their frustrations towards the part-time workers that have been hired for the 6-month period. We have to remember that we are all in this together and if we don’t have any vistors, we only (Bermuda) cannot get out of this situation.

  12. flikel says:

    Question : Does this happen in other countries? Do union meetings cause disruptions in public transport?

    How is this acceptable? Can’t the union simply have two, or even three meetings, to accommodate various work schedules and avoid any disruption in public transport?

  13. street wise says:

    When is this B.S. gonna stop…? BIU meetings being held during peak times with workers actually getting paid by us to attend. Who is in charge here, the OBA Gov’t?… or Chris Furbert?! There are TWO ships in Dockyard on Monday, so this BIU meeting will cause more major disruptions WE DO NOT NEED!! The man has TOO MUCH POWER… and that needs to be addressed… REALLY!

    • collins says:

      Where is shawn crockwell ? he needs to make a statement about this mess we might incur with thes ships.

  14. Lav Furbie says:

    Fire every single last one of them…

  15. Malachi says:

    Same old rubbish year after year.

    This, my friends, is why guns are illegal!

  16. Confuse Ed says:

    An URGENT meeting … that can wait until Monday. if its that urgent why not have it tomorrow morning first thing? Oh, sorry, my bad. tomorrow is saturday and most of the working public wont be inconvenienced by their being off work at an urgent meeting

    • Douglas says:

      Ha, never thought of it that way. Its also not a meeting urgent enough to have these Government workers attend on their OWN time since it has to do with their OWN benefit. WOW, talk about transparent!! BIU needs new leadership desperately or at least someone smart to lead them.

  17. LaVerne Furbert says:

    I don’t know what you all are going to say when the Government negotiating team meets with the Police, the Fire Service and the teachers. Believe me, it will happen and some people will be inconvienced. I think you all are in for a rude awakening. Remember, “United We Stand, Divided We Fall”.

    Such small minds on this site. Cyber klansmen, hiding behind your hoods! You remind me of those men in Django with their ill-fitting hoods.

    • Family Man says:

      It took you a little longer than normal to work in the race card today Lavy. Not feeling too chipper today? A bit under the weather?
      Poor dear.

    • SoMuchMore says:

      Yeah you and your leader Chris will make us fall. Laverne think before you talk.

    • Mad Dawg says:

      Nah, it’s no prob Lavvy. I think the idea is to pay people what they’re actually worth. You work hard, you do fine. You a lazy a$$, you get paid a lot less. But the main thing is, it’s totally fair. Whadja think Lavvy? Crucial. Respec.

    • Malachi says:

      You know Laverne, you really should be taking some type of medication. You are clearly not playing with a full deck!

    • Pickup says:

      I’m 100% certain that the Police , Fire & Teachers will send in representatives on their behalf to work it out and I’m 100% sure that at no time will the Police, Fire & Teachers leave their jobs to meet all at once. We use email and other forms to get the message out to us.

    • Pickup says:

      More like “With Bro Ottie Leading We Stood Up Strong” – with Bro Chris Leading (if you want to call it that) we have fallen!

    • Marie says:


      Even when the governments meets with the other unions and especially with the teachers & Bermuda College, the meetings are either held after school or during a common lunch hour. There is totally no disruption or inconvienence to any part of the school day.

      You go on about “United We Stand, Divided We Fall”, but you forget that the previous government put us in the financial situation, so I guess you are saying that you are going to stand together even when people are lossing their jobs because of this mess. It seems everytime it comes to trying to generate money to help with the financial burden, here comes in the BIU to prevent this from happening. Are we supposed to be encouraging the tourist to come to our island and if so, why does the BIU always seem to wait until the tourist season to fix there problems. It is a sad day, when we can’t work together.

    • Edmund Wells says:

      Ms. Furbert-

      Why the small minds comment?

      BIU workers are paid to drive busses and do other jobs. When they are conducting Union meetings during working hours, they are not doing the job they’re being paid for.

      You wouldn’t put up with that if, for example, you hired an electrician to do work at your home, and they disappeared for four hours, but demanded you pay them for those four hours.

      Why is the BIU’s stance here any different? How is that being small-minded?


    • Victor says:

      Madame Furbert, your self-imposed victim-hood is practically palpable as is your expectation of a better past by simply rewriting it to whatever your current politically correct flavour of the moment happens to be. Furthermore, your suggestion that those who share different opinions to your own are hooded clansmen is effectively sectarian in creating an atmosphere of violence and intimidation – it would appear that you have committed a hate crime.

      In the meantime, the vast majority of working people in Bermuda have spoken and their choice is to continue striving to pay their mortgages, support their families, educate their children to the best of their ability, etc and to NOT be held hostage by a BIU/PLP elite that thinks they continue to have some God given right to exploit and hold them to ransom with obscene, petty demands designed to disrupt and coerce a civil society that is just getting back to normal after years of systemic brutalization and intimidation of minorities by the likes of your good friend Dr. Ewart Brown and his cronies.

    • Building a better Bermuda says:

      How will be inconvenienced, they will be meeting with union reps for the negotiating, and we know we can trust them to schedule their meetings to inform their membership at appropriate times. Unlike the BIU they still have the trust of the people to be responsible. If your meeting had been ‘URGENT’ you would have met today, you know when the public transport schedule isn’t as busy and there are no cruise ships in to interrupt the movement of tourist out of Dockyard and around our island where they can better spend their money into our economy. Instead you would rather give as many of your membership payed time off at taxpayer expense. Unlike your motto, you are not united with the reality of this country, and instead are one of the driving forces to keep us divided.
      Your own statement tells us that you only think the BIU represents a working black man. Your small minded belief that the BIU is Bermuda shows that you would rather keep us believing this is a past era, rather than a time that has moved past you and made you and your union beliefs irrelevant and it is no wonder the rest of the country doesn’t trust or believe in you.

  18. Come On Man says:

    I got a crazy idea have the meeting on Saturday. OMG that’s right having their meeting is more important than keeping the country running by having people getting to work on time or at all. More selfish actions.

  19. SoMuchMore says:

    i think the new water taxi will do well on monday. he better eat his wheaties cause he’s gonna be up and down and round and round lol.

  20. swing voter says:

    what about hiring retired bus drivers and using the supervisors for the day….tell the others just take the day off….without pay

  21. Triangle Drifter says:

    There are loads of unemployed truck drivers around who can drive buses.

    Plenty unemployed or underemployed tourboat skippers & crews perfectly capable of running the ferrys.

    Both would be far more pleasant to the passengers than the current crop of BIU drivers & skippers.

    • Pickup says:

      The new water taxi service must be happy about this.

  22. Ringmaster says:

    An “Urgent” meeting called for 3 day’s time?! What a joke. Most doubt “urgent” because the BIU wants to warn its members that with the reduction in pay, and layoffs, caused by 14 years of PLP incompetency their monthly BIU dues will have to be increased so that the BIU does not suffer any reduction in income itself. After all we can’t have the executive and staff of the BIU take a pay cut could we? How are the Financial Accounts coming along – still in breach of the law?

  23. Building a better Bermuda says:

    Maybe I’ve got this wrong, but aren’t the union shop stewards supposed to attend meeting during regular working hours and report back to their groups so as to minimize disruption to schedules. If we end up with disruption to our transport infrastructure beyond this meeting, fire everyone that doesn’t show up for work.

  24. Clive Spate says:

    I’m not the biggest fan of the BIU and its conduct but they have given notice and it isn’t during rush hour so if it’s legal (Govt. has agreed to this) they are entitled to their meeting. The taxpayer shouldn’t foot the bill though. The Union should be making up the wages (one of the reasons Union members pay dues).

    It is the outcome of the meeting that people need to be concerned about.

  25. Franklin jr says:

    Laverne, I only wish you weren’t so old… it would be nice to know that you’d live out many years starving along with the rest of us, reaping what you’re sewing.

    Sadly, you’ll be long gone, along with your “cyber klansmen” and I’ll be left to deal with the fallout

  26. SoMuchMore says:

    Laverne please go to Martha’s Vineyard with dr eb. You two will do wonders together… Until the US kicks you two out for being clowns lol

  27. Jordan says:

    This is absolute sh*t. How does this Country continue to let this go on and on and on? Does anyone else see that the Union is screwing its own? For example, shops along Front Street are losing business every time the Union decides to “hold a meeting” and tourist can’t get from Dockyard to Hamilton. How about the fact that you pricks should remember you’re on an island and depend on new blood to come here, spend money, and go home and tell their friends to do the same. Stop being a bunch of sheep. The lot that is here sees your stupidity, yet we all can’t very well leave at once. Buck up. At the end of the day, every time you deem it worthy to hold a “meeting”, you are hurting your own. And by hurting your own, maybe that one bit of life saving gear is in that container you decided wasn’t necessary to get out because of another stupid a$$ meeting. You’re a bunch of greedy a$$es without any values and should all be fired. Tell me there is not a bunch of unemployed folks that would happily take your job, do it with grace, and feel great about being able to provide for their family. If any of you all actually care about your home Country, you’ll send a rep to the meeting Monday and the rest will continue to keep the Country running. Why? Because all of the non-union people deserve it. Don’t be selfish pricks. Care a little bit more than what it takes to care about your self .

  28. Miguelito says:

    I admit I’m an ex-pat. Have belonged to two unions in my lifetime. Neither EVER held meetings during business hours. This has gotten totally ridiculous, you lot. If you don’t show up for work, you should be fired, plain and simple. What’s wrong with you?

  29. It truly is a shame that we, “the vast majority” have to be held hostage once again by B.I.U. :-( There has to be a line drawn in the sand…Why is it so difficult for any union to hold “important meetings” during hour when it will be less of a hindrance to the people of Bermuda i.e. the workers who depend upon our public transportation to get to and fro during working hours and after work? “Brother”(I say that sarcastically) Chris Furbert don’t care about Bermuda or Bermudians, his check is in the bank while you lot are, “kicking stones” complaining about bullshhhhh!tt.

  30. Everett Outerbridge says:

    The public deserves better – why not leave the skeleton crew for the meeting instead of for serving the public?

  31. Kim Smith says:

    I urge the Government to get on top of the union. If I remember correctly, it was the reckless behaviour of the union that was the reason that tourism was relegated to step-child back in the 1980s. They know full well the damage they do by these constant disruptions to service… let along the propaganda of what they spout! Standing Strong for Bermuda… my foot!

    • LaVerne Furbert says:

      Kim Smith, for your information, the meeting is being held at the request of the Government. Hence, the BIU and the relevant heads of department worked together to bring the least disruption to the public. But you don’t want to hear that do you?

      • Kim Smith says:

        Well then, shame on the Government too!

      • Mad Dawg says:

        The meeting is not being held ” at the request of the government”. The crap you talk LaVerne.

      • Hey says:

        Why couldn’t that be put on the notice then ! Winter is coming.

      • Alicia says:

        They may have requested that the meeting be held, but did they instruct you to have it in the middle of the work day, on the week that all eyes are on Bermuda transport watching how we do with the breakaway? You could have opte dot have the meeting on Saturday instead.

      • Douglas says:

        The least disruption would have resulted had the Union learned of a new idea, its called email. A great, easy, efficient, and FREE way to contact a group of people. AND, oh yes, the group can reply to you as well. Perhaps in the future we will also have something called social media where you can post information for your group’s members to read and reply to as well. Wow, your Union will love the future Mrs. Furbert. It will be possible then to not disrupt any services your members are paid to perform AND you might get substantial feedback so that you really know how the majority feel!

  32. Nicky says:

    Years ago, I once had respect for the BIU fighting for the rights of workers. The BIU has transformed as a pain in the backside for locals and tourists alike!!

  33. Prayerful says:

    Maybe Bro. Chris called the meeting to encourage the workers to support the transportation needs of the “Breakaway”? Maybe he had an epiphany.

  34. itcouldhappsn says:

    Maybe the people of Bermuda need to strike against the union. Dont use their gas station or go to the theater. We can car pool (remember the last strike). Retirees and those who can should go up to dockyard and help shuttle tourists (for free). WE have the power. Not the biu. There is no ‘them’ without ‘us’. In the meantime prepare for an illiterate, anger-filled speech (and I use the word ‘speech’ lightly) from CF on Monday.

    • collins says:

      I guess we can look forward to brother chris on the “peoples show”to spew his ignorance….

  35. BermudaSon says:

    When our people finally decide enough is enough, they will boycott public transportation until the Union wakes up.
    The Result will be swift and severe and maybe we get a bit healthier in the process. I say let the buses run empty; Hoof it, ride a bike, hitch a ride, and ride a taxi for bus fare.

    ” I can show you better than I can tell you!” and “Action speaks louder than words”

    We are very good at Talking the talk, but how many of our respondents are willing to walk the walk.

  36. street wise says:

    Chris Furbert & the BIU = the PLP. Get it now? It’s pay-back time… again! “If it wasn’t for whitey we’d always get what we are entitled to… and we are entitled to be the Government.” REALLY?

    Got no time for Chris… but Ottie was a man of integrity.

  37. Cleancut says:

    Here we go again LF using the word “Klansmen” trying to fool the Bermuda public into believing that all the comments that appose the union are white.

    Marc Bean…… will never win an election again thanks to the Cyber Klanswoman that continues to pull you down with the “PLP RACE CARD”

  38. JT says:

    Total horse shi**.

  39. Andrew Little says:

    Honestly, what are we supposed to think….. is it any coincidence that this meeting is called three days before the Breakaway arrives? I smell a rat….. I pray to God for sanity and calm to prevail. People get ready to ‘breakaway’ into oblivion…. while we ‘breakaway’ our hostage survival kits…….No doubt, the ‘world’ is watching….

  40. Building a better Bermuda says:

    Lay it out simple to the BIU, 15% reduction in pay or 15% reduction in government jobs

  41. LaVerne Furbert says:

    Just reading the comments here reminds me of the song “Mysty Blue”.

    Oh honey, just the mention of your name
    Turns a flicker to a flame
    Listen to me good baby
    I think of the things we used to do
    And my whole world turns misty blue

    Just the mention of BIU/Chris Furbert and you bloggers turn “mysty blue”.

    • Building a better Bermuda says:

      LF, the mention of you, CF or the BIU doesn’t turn anyones world ‘Mysty Blue’, but a nauseated green. The CFBIU has been the greatest enemy to the people of Bermuda and all the hard working Bermudians who’s greatest concern right now is to make sure we can provide for our families and get through this economic storm. The greatest challenge of the current administration is to reign in the previous administration’s failure to live up to their promise to provide this country with an efficient civil service (see PLP ’98 platform). It disgusts me to no end that there a public workers still collecting a pay check from taxpayers after violating their terms of employment, simply because they are union. The union may have laid the ground work for fair employment, but now it only protects itself and is costing this country too much. It’s arrogance is tearing this country apart and it’s selfishness is stealing money from all the workers of Bermuda, especially from its membership. In short, the CFBIU is now the new 40 thieves and hooded bullies, and you are simply screeching voice at a world that has past you by and made you irrelevant.
      Goodbye LF, enjoy living in your hate filled world, you have my pity for your choice to live in it.

    • Clive Spate says:

      Reading most of your posts reminds me of the band Simple Minds!!

    • Argosy says:

      I think you are being intolerably flippant by telling us that you are singing a song under such serious circumstances. I suggest that you consider whether you would be singing if you were out of work.

      Perhaps: “Her sense of entitlement renders her much enlightenment” would fit your sad persona, LAV….

  42. d.o. says:

    Why do they have to meet at that time, is there something wrong with after 3.30 normal knock off time ?Of coarse not Mr Almighty Furbutt insists it is best to inconvenience and hold the entire population hostage. Love the timing. Half of them don’t do any actual work in any case. Pure Cr++

  43. joe says:

    Now is the summer of our discontent.

  44. M.T. Pockets says:

    Just drove through Dockyard admiring the ship alongside and another moored offshore. Oh wait, by the Museum there are hundreds of tourists standing at the bus stop and not a bus in sight.

    By the time they get tired of waiting it will be time to get back on the ship without the chance to spend any money in Bermuda.

    Good job BIU, I guess we won’t see those tourists, or any of their friends back home, here again.

    • Argosy says:

      …..they are not mentally capable of making the connection, MTP!

  45. Victor says:

    The BIU would rather see Bermuda fail than support the legitimately elected Government of this country – such is Furbert and Burgess’s hatred.

  46. BDWife says:

    This meeting was called by the OBA, not the BIU. Buses were availble for the tourists coming off the cruise ships.

  47. Flustrated says:

    Is Flustrated
    Chris going to call an emergency meeting tomorrow and demand that the Finance Minister attends?