Customs officers in talks to Government

  • Legitimate concerns: Wayne Caines. the Minister of National Security (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

    Legitimate concerns: Wayne Caines. the Minister of National Security (Photograph by Akil Simmons)


Customs officers have held talks with the Government over on-the-job safety, the Minister of National Security said yesterday.

Wayne Caines said that efforts had been made to alleviate concerns which caused customs officers to walk off the job on Wednesday night after the first Bermuda coronavirus cases were confirmed.

Airport staff and union officials met outside the airport again yesterday morning.

Mr Caines said: “The customs officers have legitimate concerns. The ministry has heard the concerns.

“One of the main challenges is at the arrival counter — the arrival counter needs to have something to protect the customs officers.

“We have spoken to the Ministry of Health and they have given us clear guidelines and they have shared with us everything that can be done for social-distancing, making sure when the arrivals come that they are a specific distance from the customs officers.”

He added: “We believe that we are doing everything possible to make sure that they are protected.”

Mr Caines said the ministry had also been in discussions with prison officers.

He said: “On Thursday, we issued clear guidelines for corrections officers.

“We believe if they follow the cleaning regimes and wear the appropriate gear that they will be safe.

“These are ongoing talks. We want to make sure everyone understands that, number one, we take these things seriously.

“We will continue to make these environments as safe as possible for all of the people within our ministry.”

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Published Mar 21, 2020 at 8:00 am (Updated Mar 21, 2020 at 8:01 am)

Customs officers in talks to Government

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