General Election 2020: PLP On Young People

September 17, 2020

The PLP held a press conference this afternoon [Sept 17] to “announce their accomplishments and platform commitments for our young people.”

Minister of Labour Jason Hayward’s remarks:

Good afternoon,

Last week, we announced our accomplishments and our platform commitments for our seniors.

Today, we’re pleased to announce our accomplishments and our platform commitments for our young people.

The PLP team, led by David Burt, offers the right combination of youth and experience. Today, we’re pleased to have with us Jache Adams, our candidate in Constituency #19, Pembroke West, and Arianna Hodgson, our candidate in Constituency #23, Paget West. Both candidates are committed to being strong and effective advocates for our young people.

I’d like to start with Arianna, who will look back at our accomplishments for young people since we’ve been elected.

Thank you, Arianna. Now, Jache will tell us what we have planned for young people in our next term…

Thank you Jache.

As Jache mentioned, two weeks ago I laid out a comprehensive jobs strategy. I will not repeat what previously said, but it contains the Youth Employment Strategy as just mentioned, and also other changes that are important to our young people.

The PLPs Jobs Strategy and our National Workforce Development Plan has youth employment at their core. The Plans prioritizes support for youth and young adults, ensuring that there are substantial investments in programmes and services that help young persons to lead healthy, safe, and successful lives. We recognize the employment barriers that exist for young Bermudians and we are committed to expanding job opportunities through the various youth employment programs that we will be implementing.

The PLP doesn’t just give lip service to young people. We are young people too, and our impressive record of delivery for our youth and our plans for the future will improve the quality of life and build wealth for future generations. Our commitment to young people in Bermuda should be a primary reason why young Bermudians should vote solidly for the PLP in this election.

Thank You.

Arianna Hodgson’s remarks:

Good afternoon,

Before I begin, I have a message for the young people of Bermuda: Get out and vote!

As young people, we tend to underestimate our power. Many of us don’t vote because we don’t think politics has anything to do with us and our day-to-day lives. But the truth is, it does. And the more we vote and the more we participate in the political process, the more we will be heard.

I’m proud of the PLP because we’re proactively involving and listening to our young people. Not only does the PLP have the youngest premier in our country’s history, but we are delivering real results for Bermuda’s youth. Since the last election, the PLP has:

  • Ensured that finances are not an obstacle to higher education, and in its first 100 days made Bermuda College accessible to all, with Financial Aid for any Bermudian who wants to earn a degree or certification or undertake extra training. Since we were elected, 800 Bermudians have taken advantage of this programme to further their education.
  • The PLP has launched the College Promise that gives any graduate from one of our public high schools free tuition at the Bermuda College.
  • The PLP has increased scholarship funding by 40% to enable more young people to access educational opportunities overseas.
  • The PLP has expanded our relationship with the University of the West Indies by providing five annual scholarships to the UWI system.
  • The PLP has decriminalized cannabis possession, which hampered the lives of young people, especially young black males, who were caught in possession and have had their lives negatively affected. This can no longer happen for simple possession offences due to the PLP.
  • The PLP has passed legislation to expunge the criminal records of those found guilty of non-violent cannabis possession, so that records are wiped clean.
  • The PLP has doubled the number of apprenticeships available to young persons in the trades, so that young Bermudians can learn while earning.
  • The PLP has kept its promise to remove conscription from the laws of Bermuda.
  • To tackle the scourge of gang violence that affects the youth, the PLP has appointed a Gang Violence Reduction Coordinator to have a singular focus on implementing programmes to reduce gang violence and antisocial behaviour. The team has expanded the Gang Resistance Education and Training Programme through all public Primary 6 and first year middle school levels, and has implemented programmes like redemption farms, while working with the private sector to place young people who want a way out of gangs into the workforce.
  • To foster entrepreneurship in young people, the PLP has created a Summer Entrepreneurship Programme at the BEDC that allows participants to start a business while earning money during the summer break.
  • The PLP has supported our young people in the arts and sports by increasing grants and support to artists, creatives, and our sporting bodies and clubs.

Previous PLP governments introduced the Day Care programme, which was an important subsidy to young mothers and families in need, and we provided support for first-time home buyers in the form of stamp duty relief for homes, which can reduce the cost by $24,000.

This Government also believes in a balanced immigration policy designed to put Bermudians first. Young Bermudians often complain that they are passed over for jobs and promotions. We hear you. There’s more work to do on enforcement while balancing the need to grow our population, but you can always count on the PLP to build a Bermuda that puts opportunities for Bermudians first.

Thank you so much.

Jache Adams remarks:

Good afternoon,

As Arianna has stated, the PLP has accomplished a lot for Bermuda’s young people since the last election, but what is on the minds of most young persons is secure employment during the time of a pandemic. The Minister of Labour has laid out a comprehensive jobs plan, which includes a Youth Employment Strategy, and that will be integral in getting young Bermudians back into work.

If we have the honour of serving as your government again, we will:

  • Implement the Youth Employment Strategy that has been tailored to the identified needs of unemployed persons between the ages of 18 and 26. This tailored programme will guide the young unemployed back into work and provide support for Bermudians to train and be developed for jobs currently occupied by guest workers.
  • The PLP will task the BEDC with creating 50 new Bermudian small businesses every year. This will mean assisting with startup grants, financing assistance, and business support while supporting the businesses of entrepreneurs through the power of public procurement.
  • We will transform Hamilton into a livable city by fostering the development of apartment buildings there that will enable young Bermudians to join the property ladder. First-time homeowners will receive support from the Government to allow them to purchase these apartments with a 5% downpayment. These apartment buildings will be built by Bermudians, who will be trained through the Youth Employment Strategy.
  • The PLP will complete the regulation and taxation of cannabis and ensure that young Bermudians, who have been negatively impacted by cannabis prohibition, have the first opportunity to access business licenses in this new industry. Revenues from cannabis taxes will be redirected to invest into communities most impacted by cannabis prohibition.
  • Over the last 2 years, 60 FinTech jobs have been created in Bermuda, and over the next 5 years, many more will be created. We will provide enhanced FinTech education and training opportunities to allow our young Bermudian entrepreneurs to get connected with this growing global industry at this early stage. Imagine if young Bermudians were at the early stage of the insurance industry 30 years ago.
  • The PLP will continue to expand scholarships and apprenticeship opportunities, enabling more young people to upgrade their skills and enter the job market.
  • We will complete the work to phase out the middle school system while introducing signature schools at the secondary level.
  • We will implement the living wage, which was made possible by the Wage Commission Act passed by the PLP. This living wage will ensure that all our young people can get the wages they need to not only survive but also thrive in our Bermuda.
  • The PLP will ensure that our tourism marketing and our tourism product highlight Bermuda art, culture and fashion, promoting our local creatives and thus providing them with a viable path to earn a living locally doing what they love.

As Arianna mentioned, we have a track record of delivering for young people. And the vision we have for our youth is a bold one. If you’re looking to create a business or get a job in Bermuda, we have your back. We’re here to help uplift you and we will continue to connect and communicate with you.

As young people, Arianna and I are at the table. We are speaking our truth and we are doing our best to represent you within the PLP. If you are a young person looking to make a positive change in our community, I do encourage you to get off the couch and get involved. Bermuda works best and it works for us when we put a little work in too.

This is your party, young people, and I am inviting you to get involved. We have a young premier, young cabinet ministers, like Minister Jason, young candidates, and a young party executive.

Together, we can keep strong leadership working for us.

Thank you.

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Comments (9)

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  1. Ringmaster says:

    All sounds fine and dandy, but where are the plans to create new jobs and pillars of the economy to provide tax revenue to pay for Government’s bloated expenses, let alone pay down the debt? Silence, because since 2017 the economy was failing, retail sales falling, revenues falling, population falling, but taxes have been rising to try and cover the costs. The PLP failed with the economy prior to Covid, and have no ideas or solutions during Covid, just borrow more and blame Covid. Digital working is likely to make matters worse, not better.

  2. kevin says:

    Please stop the BS the plp have failed every man woman and child in Bermuda and do not have a clue on how to get out of the mess they created. The old adage goes you don’t know what you don’t know and its time to admit it so we can begin the process.
    The hospital 2.5 million a quarter
    20 million over spent on Port Royal
    Police Headquarters
    Kings wharf
    St.Georges Golf course
    St.Georges FireStation
    St.Georges Police Station
    Unions run the country
    We need someone else anyone else but the plp must go

  3. Question says:

    The PLP have consigned young people to decades of high taxes, poverty, and poor social care.
    It could have been very different.

  4. sandgrownan says:

    The PLP have committed young people and future generations to debt that the PLP themselves have created. And at the same time, destroyed the economy with their idiotic xenophobic and myopic views on immigration.

    No amount of window dressing around cannabis will change that fact.

    • Wake up Bie says:

      You bloggers for the obaUBPerr need to go help Jetgate plug more holes in ya boat bie.

      • Sandgrownan says:

        Bermuda is in a fiscal hole you idiot . Even Dickinson gets it. PLP failure. How to destroy an economy in two decades.

      • saud says:

        Too bad you’re so illiterate, no one understands what you spew :)

  5. Guy Carri says:

    Committed to the young folks so much that they’ve done nothing to make sure they can cast their ballot while studying overseas.

  6. Curtis says:

    LOL … That boat is already at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean….
    These OBA so and so’s are treading water with one arm because their hopes of the already drowned UBP saving them cost them an arm and two legs….Silly emotional voters