Minister On Immigration, PRCs, Property, Quotas

March 12, 2016

Following the comments from Shadow Home Affairs Minister Walter Roban on immigration matters, the Minister of Home Affairs said he “would like to clarify several points made by MP Roban.”

PRCs Buying Property

The response said, “Firstly he incorrectly states that, ‘PRC holders are able to purchase any property in Bermuda without restriction.’

“To say that PRC’s are able to purchase any property in Bermuda without restriction is not quite accurate since they are limited to purchasing a maximum of two properties and pay a percentage tax on those purchases. Also PRCs still need a licence, therefore all non-Bermudians are restricted persons still.

Leaving The Island

“MP Roban also says,  ’There is no risk of PRC holders being dismissed from the island unless they violate any legal condition in place for holding a PRC.’

“This is, at face value, correct. We are not saying that PRCs face a risk of being kicked off the island. What we’re saying is that people who have no prospect of ever getting full civil and political rights might just volunteer to leave, as has been the feedback from several business owners who have left the island in recent years under the previous administration.

“Also this statement fails to capture the hundreds of people born in Bermuda to PRCs who have no rights to stay themselves. Many are approaching their working years and they will be asked to leave [absent a work permit]. Many of these people who were born in Bermuda who are on work permits face the real possibility of not have their permits renewed.

PRCs Who Are Parents Of Bermudian Children

“On MP Roban’s third point, that ‘A PRC, who is the parent of a child with Bermudian status, or children who are deemed to belong and may be entitled to status, are protected under the Bermuda constitution. That parent would not be asked to leave,’ we would say that PRCs have rights to stay regardless of whether their children are Bermudians or not so this point is moot.

Constitutional Protection 

“Also, the constitutional protection claim is not true. The constitution – Section 11[5] – only includes wives of Bermudian men [provided they are not living apart] and the under-18 children of Bermudians. The extension of spousal rights component is ministerial policy not a constitutional one, meaning that a new Minister could decide to change that at any time.”

Misrepresent Immigration Situations

“The accusation that the OBA is trying to misrepresent immigration situations for political purposes is untrue.

“Under the PLP’s immigration regime, thousands of people left Bermuda, creating a downward spiral for Bermuda’s economy. The OBA has arrested that development and as such unemployment for Bermudians has fallen.

“I am happy to repeat for Mr. Roban a fact that is an inconvenient truth for him….more people living in Bermuda means more jobs for Bermudians.


“Regarding their very late in the day proposals, we have repeatedly explained why the OBA cannot support quotas.  Simply put this leads to discrimination. No country gives quotas to those applying for citizenship if they meet the legal criteria.

“We have provided the numbers of people expected to apply on a yearly basis. This is also ignored.  Finally, our policy does allow for high skilled workers to come to Bermuda and our legislation will address the family issues that Mr. Roban makes reference to.


“This Government is doing everything it can to stimulate growth in the economy. We are assisting local business and Bermudians in the opportunities being created through new projects, and we are confident of success.”

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Comments (62)

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  1. Cotty Outerbridge says:

    Hear, hear!

    • What About Bermudians says:

      This is a ridiculous statement from the Minister.

      “Under the PLP’s immigration regime, thousands of people left Bermuda, creating a downward spiral for Bermuda’s economy. The OBA has arrested that development and as such unemployment for Bermudians has fallen.”

      1) PLP’s immigration policies didn’t cause the global financial crisis. To blame immigration for Madoff, Bean Stearns, XL, Butterfield, AIG is disingenuous

      2) Number of people working has fallen every year under the OBA. To claim credit for a drop in unemployment when in fact the labourforce is shrinking and less Bermudians are working is stupid.

      3) Bermuda cannot confer citizenship, that is the UK. There is no such thing as Bermudian citizenship. PRCs have Bermuda Passports just like people with Bermuda status do.

      • Concerned says:

        Really! I have PRC, that is a stamp in my passport, issued by another country not a bermudian passport to which I do no have any rights.

        • We the People (1st!!) says:

          Please explain why you need political rights.

          I know people don’t answer truthfully on here even when they say that are because they are trying to make political points.

          As a PRC holder, which you have another passport as you stated, don’t you have political rights in the country in which you hold the passport?

          Can you move freely between Bermuda and the country you in which you hold your current passport and stay in either country as long as you like?

          Can you up and move tomorrow to the country in which you hold the passport?

          • Concerned says:

            As I do not live in my country of origin, I am not entitled to vote. Another passport! Obviously you misunderstand. I have one passport only, unlike most Bermudians who have a Bermuda passport and a European Union passport. I pay taxes in Bermuda, therefore I should have a vote!

            • Cmkbda says:

              And that is the crux of the problem. People who pay taxes, who rent homes, who buy groceries, who set up their lives for 15-20 years SHOULD have some say in what happens in that country. As a Bermudian, with Bermudian citizenship (because…actually, it is such a thing), I think that PRC holders should be allowed to apply for citizenship after 20 years. Anyone who disagrees clearly doesn’t understand basic human rights.

      • Game over says:

        What about Bermudians look the OBA doesn’t care about you face the facts. Now they will give all these people who have a second home bda status. Now continue to stay on the financial assistance Bermudians are finished.

      • Zevon says:

        The PLP did create and worsen Bermuda’s financial crisis. The PLP loves to trot out the “worldwide recession” myth. The USA was in and out of recession in 15 months. The UK was the same. Canada was shorter. Bermuda’s disaster of a recession lasted seven years, thanks to the incompetent Cox, Brown and Burch. And we only came out of recession in 2015. You can make excuses all you like, but you can’t change the facts. Bermuda’s recession lasted nearly a decade, and the PLP had no idea at all how to get us out of it.

        Talking of facts, your point number 3 is completely wrong as well. Many PRCs and even many people with status do not have Bermuda passports, they just have a stamp.

        • Ian says:

          World wide recession myth… You my friend have absolutely NO credibility.

          • Zevon says:

            Ok, refute the facts then. Arrogant guy

          • Cmkbda says:

            Again…purposefully being obtuse. Zevon is clearly not calling the recession a myth. But the fact that our recession lasted a helluva lot longer than any other developed country in the world. Why? Because of the decisions the PLP made while in power. So yea…the global recession happened, but the PLP made Bermuda’s recession a helluva lot worse than it should have been.

          • Come Correct says:

            Last I checked Canada was part of the world. What happened to them? Since the plp overspent on just about every government project it just made the recession we got from the US even worse. Had they listened we might not be as bad off as we are now, maybe not even at all. You are the one with no credibility.

          • thetruth says:

            Ian says:
            March 13, 2016
            Arrogant prick…


            Nah, it’s Ian that’s the arrogant prick.

      • Cmkbda says:

        The PLP obviously didn’t cause Madoff, etc. Try not to be purposefully obtuse. What the PLP DID do, was halt the renewal of work permits, which caused thousands of workers to have to leave the island when their work permits weren’t renewed. When 3,500 foreign workers left the island, a comparable amount of Bermudians also lost their jobs. Why? Because Bermuda depends on guest workers. The more people we have on the island, the more jobs available for Bermudians. That is why this policy is essential to our economy.

        • thetruth says:

          Madoff was nothing to do with the recession.

  2. Korea says:

    well said but will the Mr raban be deaf and not hear or understand, probably

  3. Born Bermudian says:

    OBA doesn’t get it.. At least pretend to support Bermudians while you are performing Magic tricks.

    • aceboy says:

      No, YOU don’t get it. You don’t understand what is going on because you do not read and try and educate yourself. You simply listen to Roban and his guys

      My family has been here since the 1600s. Don’t try this anti Bermudian crap on me.

      • Ian says:

        Yeah…. Those who oppose the oba’s blatant manipulation just don’t get it. They’re just soooo blind and ignorant…. Keep believing that.

  4. democracy? says:

    but can we still march on monday??? this wont change anyones mind unfortunately as Korea says they probly wont read or understand it…..

    • steve says:

      The minister answers in blunt fact based English. This method of speak does not appeal to everyone and some refuse to believe a word he says. NOTE: AT LEAST HE DOES RESEARCH AND STAYS ON POINT AS BEST HE CAN!! (yea i guess i am screaming at keyboard lol)Mr Roban was once a minister that played his own game fairly loose like a few others in his party at the time. He also once resigned over a “misunderstanding/for the good of the party…whatever)” such as allowing two appealed applications that had been denied by the proper planning board(the true professional in the industry) incidentally the two disputed approvals were for Wayne Furbert and Zane Desilva’s applications. Hey we all use bad judgement and t and make bad choices “get caught up”, but isn’t it time you stopped confusing us with the political game some of us don’t understand or find confusing? Mr Roban,I know you care and you can help this country please be your best for the long game. Thank you for considering my comment.

  5. Tony says:

    “More people living in Bermuda means more jobs for Bermudians” is not a fact nor a truth -inconvenient or otherwise.
    Supposing the majority of the “more people” were hotels workers, landscapers & restaurant workers, they would not impact the need for services as would executives in an exempt company.
    They would however take jobs that Bermudians (particularly in these difficult times) are willing & qualified to do. And it is a fact that many in those categories send a major part of their income back home.
    Unemployment for Bermudians has not fallen under the OBA regime. That is factually untrue.
    Companies left the island primarily because the world economy contracted, not because of the PLP Government.
    We certainly could have handled the international recession better if the PLP had handled government finances more diligently.

    • Runner says:

      Companies left the Island because the PLP said they didn’t want people who looked like them working here! Get it right. Also, don’t forget term limits which resulted in many leaving the Island.

      • Tony says:

        You got it wrong.The PLP never stated that . What you’re referring to was an entirely different issue. Not saying I agree with the sentiment but it had nothing to do with people working here.
        Term limits were not an issue for Exempt Companies as they were given waivers repeatedly.

        • Zevon says:

          Term limits were definitely an issue for exempt companies. They have to compete for the best talent in the world, and people who are in demand, and who can work anywhere, are reluctant to move their families to places where they are patently unwelcome. Pretending term limits didn’t make any difference is just sticking your head in the sand.

          • Ian says:

            One second it’s term limits next second it’s Burch sound bytes next second it’s increases in payroll tax… You know, like what the oba just approved.

            • Zevon says:

              Cox’s payroll tax increase was 2x the current one, and done while Burch was term-limiting IB out of the country. But you’re too much of an arrogant prick to admit it.

            • I got to much brains says:

              Wow you are so frantic and vitriolic and all over these blogs , subtle hints of threats and violence against your fellow Bermudians , are you sure you are Bermudian?

        • Longtail says:

          Term limits were a very serious problem for local businesses…….

        • aceboy says:

          That is simply not true. No business wants to rely on waivers that are at the whim and mercy of a government minister. Especially one that DID say “We don’t care what you think.” Think before you write.

        • Tolerate says:

          Sorry Tony; you bring up good points but Term Limits WAS an issue for Exempt Companies and them der are de FACTS!!!
          It was a bad decision created to put a band-aid on the real issue which was repeat waivers for work permits. With correct measures in place to regulate work permits (and qualifications) Term Limits would NOT be required.
          I work in a field that has specialist requirements that are difficult to resource (if they can even be found) in Bermuda, and a few of my work colleagues have had their work permits renewed.
          With Term Limits; my company would need for a Bermudian to be qualified for the job position, and if NOT; than it’s off to the International pool to fill the spot. Now my question is, if you have an International worker ALREADY resourced, who already has a working relationship with your customer base; “WHY?” A Bermudian is NOT losing out on a job opportunity and his work permit will come up for a renewal AGAIN. At that time, if a Bermudian can be resourced; I fully back the work permit expiring and the Bermudian hired for the job.
          However barring that;the companies service delivery is being affected, resulting in lose of clients, resulting in cut backs at the company level, resulting in “I” a Bermudian being out of a job.
          You see in the PRIVATE sector; these are the REAL challenges.

      • Ian says:

        So deluded. You’re all liars. Just like your forefathers.

        • Come Correct says:

          “Prejudice is an emotional commitment to ignorance.”

    • Are you paying attention? says:

      Tony, that’s a valid point but relates entirely to the work permit process and has nothing to do with granting rights to people who have helped support this country with their taxes for 20years.

      If your issue is with people staying here for 20 years who shouldn’t be or getting work permits when they shouldn’t there are appropriate channels to deal with it. Also worth noting that the current government has issued considerably less work permits and on the evidence presented taken a more aggressive approach to work permit violations than the previous administration.

      • Ian says:

        Those people have supported THEMSELVES through the opportunity Bermuda presented. They are not necessarily entitled to our vote. Especially after most of the ones the oba accommodate made out like bandits over those years. Boo goo for the guy who’s been living here on a working vacation benefiting from housing allowances and every other perk real bermudians can’t relate to. Bermuda recognizes a pathway is fair we it owes them nothing so stop trying to convince bermudians this is a one sided dynamic.

    • Alex says:

      How a nanny or a waitress or even a care giver is going to give me a job when my neighbor next door pays a filippino friend to baby sit her kid instead of paying a nursery that will be having Bermudians working there? People like to play dumb

    • murph says:

      Hi Tony
      There is little chance of landscapers or hotel workers flooding the jobs market. If you remember, they were cleared out with term limits. Those that had term limit ‘waivers’ were generally specialist eg. emergency drs, underwriters etc. So if the generally specialist people were given PRC/status, the hotel jobs would still be safe. If underwriting was allowed to flourish hotel jobs would increase as an awful lot of hotels cater to the business rather than the holiday market. Does this make sense?

    • Concerned says:

      A mojorpart of their income! Get real! Other posts say bermudians will not take these jobs as the wages paid will not give them a livable wage! 19 dollars an hour! Do the math!

    • Mes says:

      These people already have jobs !!!!!!! This is for longggg termmmm residentssssssss. How slow do you need to hear this? Put down your pitchfork and educate yourself for goodness sake.
      And as a Bermudian in the service industry I will tell you one thing. The majority of “Bermudians” are not “willing” to do these jobs. They take these protected category jobs and perform them with disdain and drip with the attitude that these jobs are beneath them and the fact that they deserve better. They believe they deserve jobs in these FOREIGN IB companies that will finance the lifestyle they believe the deserve. Why?
      To the best candidate goes the job. Either buck up or shut up.

    • jt says:

      You need to read a first year economics text.

    • Todd Martin says:

      “More people living in Bermuda means more jobs for Bermudians”
      Completely factual and easily proven.
      We have immigration laws that protect Bermudians and their jobs. The only time a foreigner can get a work permit is if there is no qualified Bermudian to take that job. Not hearsay…. fact! If this has not happened there is legal recourse that one can take. Fact!
      Aside from that, the notion that “hotels workers, landscapers & restaurant workers” do not contribute to our economy is simple clap trap. They pay taxes, they pay rent and buy groceries and electronics, vehicles and furniture. They pay for services such as internet, electricity, cell phone service. Sure they may also save money and send to their family, but the bulk of their money stays here as ALL residents on this island know how difficult it is to save money each month after paying bills.
      Unemployment for Bermudians has in fact fallen under the OBA.
      Companies were made to feel unwelcome and with the implementation of the term limits, most companies that left actually stated that those were the reasons.

      • bakatawn says:

        How many of them living in two bedroom rental n saving in a that money that….

  6. I am sure NONE of the people who left their jobs and went on protest…are in any danger of losing even one of their jobs to a PRC holder!!!..I am also resolutely sure that PRC holders are economy stimulators…Further, I am entirely sure that Pathways is the right choice for a mature and civilized society in fair treatment of many deprived of fair rights including the many children of Bermudians
    .I can also readily see the economic value to not only stimulate the economy but foster a renewed sense of Bermuda’s maturity in the international arena that builds the sort of confidence that stimulates further growth.What concerns me is how radicalized this has been made by both the BIU and the PLP with heavy racial overtones and disturbing rhetoric that agitates less informed into a frenzy of anger, I personally think that is irresponsible….Mr. Roban certainly can read the facts…and his misinformation is mischievous by intent IMO…

    • Moonshadow says:

      I wholeheartedly agree with the various points you make…and in particular your comment “What concerns me is how radicalized this has been made by both the BIU and the PLP with heavy racial overtones and disturbing rhetoric that agitates less informed into a frenzy of anger, I personally think that is irresponsible….Mr. Roban certainly can read the facts…and his misinformation is mischievous by intent IMO…” Sadly, although appalled by these tactics, I am not surprised by them. This us against them mentality is detrimental to Bermuda as a whole and needs to stop now.

  7. Coffee says:

    Don’t listten to Fayhe …. He has never walked twelve inches in a Bermudians shoes !

    • Zevon says:

      If you can’t see why that’s a racist comment you are part of the problem.

  8. Unbelievable says:

    PLP PoliTricks.

  9. Raymond Ray says:

    “The perfect “Con-man” is a person who is selling dreams to dreamers” And that’s all them Union leaders / Progressive Labour Party are doing! Open your eyes for heaven sake, before you all are / will be loser :-(

    • Btt says:

      Be careful what you ask for when you ask Bermudians to “open your eyes.” At a quick glance all Portuguese landscaping and cleaning companys in Bermuda require 3 to 5 years experience to obtain a job with those companies.( more experince than say a car mechanic or a school teacher) The question is why? How much experince do all the loads of Portuguese and Filipinos these companies travel miles and miles away to hire have to do those jobs? Or do they really care? Not so perferct Con?

      • Come Correct says:

        I think for jobs such as what you mentioned, Bermudians should be waived from the experience clause if they apply. This is Bermuda, Bermudians should be getting trained in order to get this experience required, or if you are granted the permit you should be required to bring on a Bermudian to gain experience. A structural engineer however, I can see the need for experience. Not that I don’t think there are qualified Bermudian structural engineers, just an example. On one hand we’re talking about operating an industrial vacuum cleaner and the other could be catastrophic structural failure of a building or bridge with multiple lives at risk.

  10. Serious Though says:

    OBA Technical proposal a failure

    OBA and PLP should setup a bipartisan commission on this issue.(no politician allowed)

    • I Don't Think So says:

      Since the OBA and the PLP are both political organizations I do not believe that they are capable of setting up a bipartisan commission, which would be a political entity, with no politicians in it.
      Just saying.
      It’s like saying you want to build a stone house without using any stone, which would in fact be a technical failure.

    • john says:

      agreed with no politician on the committee u will get a more of a fair n balance policy. i hope it does not get to the point were people have to be sacrificed to get points across. all the arguement for this gov proposal u need to really go online n listen to mr burt. if u allow urself to really listen its not about black or white plp/oba/ubp/biu/bta/bpsa. when i really think about it how many less college will be available to born bermudians with the implementing of these extra people were thier parents came here on work permit n all work permit holders have to sign a application that clearly says they have no right to reside in bermuda

    • Eyes Wide Open says:

      Serious question: Was there any form of bipartisan commission set up while the PLP was in government?

    • Capital Q says:

      New word of the month: bipartisan.

      I hear it repeated constantly by the protestors and it is written all over their signs. Yet it is evident that many including yourself do not understand what it means. You just repeat it over and over as if it is a fantastic new concept coined by those opposed to the recent parliamentary proposals.

      You cite bipartisan as ‘no politician allowed’ but please, please look up the definition in the nearest dictionary you can find. It is by definition a term involving political parties.

  11. What you think says:

    All the OBA DOES.. Lie lie and more lie! When will it STOP?!

    • jt says:

      The instant you stop believing the misinformation you’re being fed.

  12. Rhonda says:

    Our government is playing chess, with us as the pawns……

    an open honest, transparent Joint Select Committee is needed to achieve a comprehensive review of immigration….

    The OBA put out a proposal of what they would do for current Bermudian in an afford to prevent the importation or more cheap labour…and leveling the compatibility of Bermudian to apply for medium – low skilled Labour occupations, things such as introducing a living wage categories… and closing some job categories….

    so why do the two in piece meal.. what is the rush….

    I want to believe the OBA that this isn’t just the first stage solidify the white vote……. and the second phase is a carrot the keeps moving and never happens….on purpose or not…

    • OK says:

      Just keep right on selling that hate and fear, because that’s all you do.

  13. Positivity says:

    I am reading a lot of comments about jobs and people taking jobs but haven’t read one account of a job being taken from someone. What jobs were taken where you were more qualified with impeccable references? Those stories would hold more weight.

  14. Questions for the PLP says:

    Has the PLP put forward a proposal for how it would address the court’s decision? The PLP is calling for a bipartisan approach but so far the impression is that its position is one of “no, no change”. Why does the PLP feel it deserves a seat at the table with that position and no proposals put forward? If my impression is not correct, please state the PLP’s proposals, and specifically to address the court decision. Thanks.

  15. steve says:

    the PLP love to talk,shout and be heard. Yet when you ask them a serious question they go silent… seems strange.