Hayward: ‘Labour Day Has Become Bittersweet’

September 5, 2016

Labour Day “has become bittersweet,” BPSU President Jason Hayward said, as it is a time when we celebrate the contributions that labour has made throughout the years, however it is “also a time that causes us to reflect on how unjust and unequal this society can be for some.”

Mr Hayward said, “Labour Day in Bermuda has become bittersweet. It is a time when we celebrate the workforce and the contributions that labour has made throughout the years.

“However, it is also a time that causes us to reflect on how unjust and unequal this society can be for some.

“With many still unemployed and suffering financially, we must ask ourselves what is wrong with the current structure of Bermuda that permits these unfortunate conditions to continue to exist for so many of our brothers and sisters.

Jason Hayward Bermuda TC September 5 2016

“This Government has been unable to stimulate job grow and has failed to produce policies that encourage businesses to retain jobs. The latest employment numbers emanating from Government reveal that Bermuda has lost more jobs, thereby creating less options for Bermudian employment.

“Even more alarming, however, is the fact that the number of jobs held by Bermudians have declined year-over-year while the number of jobs held by our expatriate brothers and sisters have increased. There is a fundamental problem with this picture.

“The socio-economic conditions of the Bermudian people will continue to decline if this trend is not reversed. Our unemployed are losing more and more hope with each passing day.

“Due to Bermuda’s high cost of living, the prevalence of under-employment and the absence of a liveable wage, those with jobs are finding it difficult to survive.

“In addition, our elders are finding the financial demands of daily life extremely stressful. We cannot continue to gloss over these realities. The social contract between the Government and the citizens of Bermuda requires Government to intervene and provide support to those who are struggling.

“While Bermuda can boast of being ranked amongst one of the richest countries in the world, where do we rank in terms providing social welfare to our citizens?

“The Labour Day celebration theme is ‘Pathway to Unity’, and in this spirit we must rid ourselves of our individualistic ways and move ahead collectively; leaving no one behind.

“We must build a system of welfare in Bermuda that ensures that healthcare is affordable and accessible to all; ensures that the unemployed have benefits; ensures that pensioners have adequate income and ensures that support is provided for families in need.

“Social welfare comes at a cost. We saw the PLP strengthen social welfare during their time in Government by providing benefits to seniors, childcare allowances to parents and free college tuition to students, however, it was not sustained.

“To be sustainable, social welfare must be accompanied by a tax system that provides adequate revenue. To do this, we must move to implementing fair and reasonable corporate taxation, a tax on investments and progressive taxes on citizens.

“The reality is we can either collectively help those in need or we can be a society that leaves some of our brothers and sisters alone to fend for themselves,” concluded Mr Hayward.

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Comments (12)

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  1. truth says:

    Wow hold on. So what am I working for? I could just refuse and you’d intervene with free tuition, support, healthcare, etc. Sign me up!!!

    • Bermyman says:

      yep with all the money from working taxpayers in the private sector to pay for your life! Private sector Bermuda works hard so the Jason and his Union pals can enjoy 100% job security and umpteen benefits.

  2. the real Terry says:

    Mr. Hayward I find it very ironic that you mention the current financial impacting on your brothers and sisters without mentioning that before the former government came to power in 1998 anyone who wanted to work could find a job. In the 13 years of their reign over 5,000 were unemployed or under employed. Where was your concern then?

  3. jt says:

    Charles Barkley. Next year’s guest speaker?

  4. Northrock says:

    Yeah, the PLP strengthened social welfare by binding us to a BIU contract that has almost bankrupted Bermuda – and all so the PLP could attract votes and provide an unemployment program at the same time.

  5. O.M.G says:

    That’s what I keep saying where were they when stuff was going bad. Mr Hayward why weren’t you there for your people then. And by the way giving free everything just got votes not wealth. You lot need to get off your high horse and help your people as you all keep saying. This country is made up of so many different races and most of us go out and work hard to make it a better place for all. STOP putting your people down all the time it is a very demeaning thing to do or maybe you just want them to think they will never get anywhere. People stop being brain washed by such radical speeches please and help one another.

  6. JUNK YARD DOG says:

    Stop your Complaining and Wining.

    The hardest thing will will ever do is go to collect our social assistance.

    Don’t ask me to perform community service, or wash dishes, clean cars, and cut grass. Because, that is beneath my pay scale !

    The definition of Lazy, is Lazy.

  7. Build a Better Bermuda says:

    This is why Mr. Hayward is ineffective as a leader in this country. He governs himself by an ideology, an intangible and unattainable ideology that has never worked in any country. It is obvious he does not understand what makes this country work or how we can produce jobs for ourselves, but instead preaches a failed political ideological practice because it sounds beneficial to those that don’t understand how functioning social democracies actually manage to work. As a small island with no exportable natural material resources to support a large labour force and import foreign capital, we developed an industry that brought foreign capital in by intellectual resources. However, we did not have enough local intellectual resources to sustain meet the industry needs, so importation was required… and still is, as we have not retooled ourselves as a society/culture/country/people to meet the needs still required. But lack of intellectual resources is not the only reason intellectual resource importation is still required, we have also become dependant on the foriegn capital they bring for construction, rental, utilities… and virtually all other industries that they contributed to just by living here. A large part of the unemployment problem among Bermudians isn’t related to there not having created enough jobs for locals, but that there isn’t enough foreigners here to support the creation of those jobs. This is why the foriegn jobs are up and Bermudians aren’t yet, because we haven’t recreated the foreign job numbers that used to sustain the higher local employment yet.

  8. rodney smith says:

    Mr. Hayward, “You cannot stand under a banner ,”Pathways To Unity ,” and not invite representatives from the government to speak .Love them or hate them, “They are still the government”. How could we make such an important day, a celebration of only labor ? Demand that the government speak to the people. DON’t DENY THEM THE OPPORTUNITY. Bermuda is bigger than the BPSU, BIU, OBA, PLP, or any other union or group. THE FIGHT WILL GO ON UNTIL WE ALL LEARN .Jason, You must step up.

  9. Vote for progress says:

    And that’s why I no longer give my $87 monthly contribution to the BPSU.

  10. hulktoo says:

    A change in mindset is much needed until then all will remain the same

  11. Patricia R says:

    Mr Hayward, you need to get your facts straight, it. was BC executive who wanted the fees reinstated. After
    all. how can you pay for all the free accommodation, gas, security, phones and other perks if there are no funds being generated from student fees. Do your research, I am you will find this is the case.