As Department of Public Transportation workers have withdrawn their labor, the Government will ask minibuses operators to provide the service to ensure hospital staff can get to work, and “public officers that do not wish to report to work, will not be paid for the time” and that “money will be used to fund the minibus service.”
This was from Premier David Burt at this evening’s press briefing, with the Premier saying he is “extremely disappointed with this development,” and “it is only together that we are able to come through this unprecedented global pandemic.”
The Government had previously announced that the Department of Public Transportation was scheduled to provide a daily bus service for Bermuda Hospital Board employees commuting to and from the hospital.
Speaking at this evening’s press briefing, Premier David Burt said, “To ensure our healthcare workers can get to and from work, in the absence of the Department of Public Transportation service — as workers at the Department of Public Transportation have withdrawn their labor — minibuses will be invited to bid to provide this service at a reasonable fee for service.
“I am extremely disappointed with this development from the staff at the Department of Public Transportation, and this afternoon I sent a letter [PDF] to public officers reminding them that they must move beyond the barriers of their job in order to provide service to the people of Bermuda, as they are public officers.
“We will each be called upon and asked to work in a different capacity to keep the country running, and it is only together that we are able to come through this unprecedented global pandemic stronger.
“I have also made sure that it is made clear from the Cabinet, and the Cabinet has full support, that public officers that do not wish to report to work, will not be paid for the time of which they are absent, and that money will be used to fund the minibus service,” the Premier added.
This marks the second time during the pandemic the Government has used private operators to provide a service due to labour issues, as it follows after the Corporation of Hamilton and private truckers collected residential garbage last week.