Log In

Reset Password

Fahy quizzed on work permits

Home Affairs Minister Michael Fahy was questioned about the delay in new work permit policies in the Senate yesterday.

The initiatives were expected to come into effect this week but Mr Fahy announced last week that there had been set back due to a “change of heart” by the Association of Bermuda International Companies (ABIC).

He said the body had initially supported implementing a Bermuda Employment Visa (BEV), but that ABIC members began to have concerns.

Progressive Labour Party Senator Diallo Rabain said he was pleased to hear that Mr Fahy would rather wait than get the policies wrong, but he questioned why Government had failed to heed the Opposition's call for comprehensive immigration reform, particularly in regard to the “section 20B loophole”.

He said a piecemeal approach would cause more issues in the future, adding: “Let's get it right. Let's really look at it and get it right.”

Mr Rabain questioned Mr Fahy about the decision process, asking if the change in the BEV policy came after consultation with ABIC or just certain members of the organisation.

Mr Fahy said both, adding: “I had several meetings in the previous weeks with a number of individuals and organisations who shared their thoughts with me.

“I was grateful for those thoughts. I was somewhat disappointed that they came so late in the day, but that's okay.

“I subsequently had meetings with a number of board members in ABIC and then a final meeting with ABIC last week, before my announcement, where I became aware they were no longer supportive based on information they had received from their members.”

Asked why the One Bermuda Alliance had ignored concerns about BEV when voiced by the Opposition, Mr Fahy said: “It's interesting how things work. How credit can be taken for something that was not a concern of mine at that time.”

He said the basis of the BEV came from several organisations, including ABIC, as a means of attracting new businesses to Bermuda, and that the proposal had evolved over the course of a year with an accreditation process being developed to ensure that Bermudians would receive training opportunities.

The new work term policy is expected to be modified and retabled in February.

You must be Registered or to post comment or to vote.

Published December 04, 2014 at 8:00 am (Updated December 04, 2014 at 12:45 am)

Fahy quizzed on work permits

What you
Need to
1. For a smooth experience with our commenting system we recommend that you use Internet Explorer 10 or higher, Firefox or Chrome Browsers. Additionally please clear both your browser's cache and cookies - How do I clear my cache and cookies?
2. Please respect the use of this community forum and its users.
3. Any poster that insults, threatens or verbally abuses another member, uses defamatory language, or deliberately disrupts discussions will be banned.
4. Users who violate the Terms of Service or any commenting rules will be banned.
5. Please stay on topic. "Trolling" to incite emotional responses and disrupt conversations will be deleted.
6. To understand further what is and isn't allowed and the actions we may take, please read our Terms of Service
7. To report breaches of the Terms of Service use the flag icon