Bus Dispute Continues, BIU & Govt Statements

August 19, 2021 | 8 Comments

[Updated] The “present bus service dispute is not the responsibility of the members of the Bus Division of the BIU ” as the ”agreement was ratified by the members of the Bus Division this morning and they were ready to go to work,” the BIU said today.

This latest statement comes on the fourth day without bus service due to the dispute.

The most recent statement from the Government was issued at around 9.30pm last night and said that the DPT and BIU met and a “tentative agreement was reached. It will be proposed at a BIU Bus Division members meeting at 8:00 am tomorrow, 19 August. If ratified, it is anticipated that the service will resume at around noon,” the Government stated last night.

In a statement issued today, a BIU spokesperson said, “The Bermuda Industrial Union would like to make it clear to the public that the present Bus service dispute is not the responsibility of the members of the Bus Division of the Bermuda Industrial Union.

“As it was reported the Bermuda Industrial Union and the Department of Public Transportation reached a tentative agreement last evening that agreement was ratified by the members of the Bus Division this morning and they were ready to go to work. We will update the public further tomorrow morning at a press conference that will be held at 10:30 a.m. on this dispute.”

If the Government provides a statement we will update as able, and we also plan to live stream the BIU’s press conference tomorrow morning.

Update 6.16pm: A Government spokesperson said, “Minister of Transport Lawrence Scott confirmed that an agreement had been reached with the Bermuda Industrial Union in the ongoing dispute over scheduling / rosters however, a failure by the BPSU to support the agreement means the issue is not yet resolved.:

Minister Scott said: “ In good faith the BIU came to the table with the DPT management and we arrived at a workable solution to the issue which would see service resume tomorrow, August 20th. I wish to thank the BIU who, recognizing the need to get the service running again for the benefit of the travelling public, worked with the DPT team to arrive at an agreement. Unfortunately, the BPSU-represented supervisors who perform the critical dispatching function, did not support the agreement and as such the service could not resume.”

Minister Scott also confirmed that he informed the Minister of Labour that the issues had not been resolved.

Labour Minister Jason Hayward said, “The BIU and the DPT worked hard to reach this point but with the matter still unresolved, in accordance with section 70 of the Act, I have referred the dispute for settlement to the Employment and Labour Relations Tribunal established under section 44B of the Employment Act 2000.

“As all parties are aware, the long-standing custom and practice, is for work to begin again with such a referral. It would be ideal if the issues were resolved and the Tribunal would not then be required to hear the matter. The Labour Department remains at the disposal of all parties to facilitate that resolution.”

Minister Scott advised that “discussions would continue aimed at having the bus service start as soon as possible tomorrow morning.”

Update 6.43pm: The text below was contained in today’s official notices:

Notice Of Declaration Of Labour Dispute

Pursuant to section 69 of the Trade Union and Labour Relations [Consolidation] Act 2021 [the “Act”], I declare that a labour dispute exists between the Department of Public Transportation and Bermuda Industrial Union on behalf of Bus Operators.

In accordance with section 70 of the Act, I am referring the said dispute for a determination or settlement to the Employment and Labour Relations Tribunal established under section 44B of the Employment Act 2000.

In accordance with section 87 of the Act, after the publication of this Notice, any lock-out, strike or irregular industrial action short of a strike is unlawful and any person who takes part in, incites or in any way encourages, persuades or influences any person to take part in, or otherwise act in furtherance of, a lock-out, strike or irregular industrial action short of a strike declared by this section to be unlawful shall be liable to a civil penalty as my be imposed by the Tribunal.

Dated the 19th day of August 2021.

The Hon. Jason P. Hayward JP, MP

Minister of Labour

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Comments (8)

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  1. puzzled says:

    HELLO!!!!!!

    Peeple gutta gat dis right.
    Nut de Bus Division.
    Must be Marine ann Pahortz.

  2. wtf says:

    this is better than a Dr Zeus book. Incompetence comes to mind

  3. becareful of the truth says:

    It’s a shane when the same people (Supervisors) former bus drivers that had same issues as the present drivers are not in tune.
    There is much division at DPT that needs sorting, so we the Public can have our service back.
    Mr Todd you need to weed out the disgruntled Supervisors and get them help.
    Once again the employees saying they not working because of the agreement that was agreed to above their pay grade.
    This whole fiasco is totally wrong and needs to be dealt justice for the tax payers.
    If your unhappy with the decisions get another job where you can be happy.
    Let’s get this service on the road.

    • Privatize says:

      Let’s just put out to tender and get people who want to work jobs and send them home to sit on a wall and watch us as our private buses go by! Justice!

  4. Marine Life says:

    Bus Drivers, supervisors, dispatchers, Public Works, Marine Ports, Sanitation,highways ,parks and all others are members of the Public to. When they get stomped on by elected officials, they are certainly entitled to their own opinions. How many times do these elected officials really honor the work that is done by these departments? It is not shown much if any. Instead, too much push down, and throw to the curb! It is not nice being tossed around like a piece of trash. Strikes happen because something came down the pipe from the top, something that should not have. Strikes mean that something needs drastic improvement by the Government!

  5. Sandgrownan says:

    Perfect. They all get an extra week off mid august.

  6. Observer says:

    For the taxpayers to get better service for their money there are two Government divisions which should be privatized – Public Transport and the Mechanics Section at Public Works.
    Don’t spen any more money on buses. Issue permits for the larger mini buses to whoever wants to really serve the community.

  7. Joe Bloggs says:

    The “present bus service dispute is not the responsibility of the members of the Bus Division of the BIU ”

    Really? I seem to recall the bus drivers refusing to work because management would not do as it was told by the bus drivers (https://bernews.com/2021/08/interruption-in-bus-service-on-monday/).

    I believe that makes it entirely the bus drivers’ fault.

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