70% Think Bermuda Headed in Wrong Direction
Statement by the One Bermuda Alliance, December 2, 2012
With the serious economic and public safety challenges facing Bermuda, the One Bermuda Alliance felt it important to reach out to one of the world's top global strategic research firms to assist us in our efforts to turn Bermuda's economy around. And to begin that process, the following is from a recent poll conducted for the One Bermuda Alliance by the Benenson Strategy Group.
The Benenson Strategy Group has a long and distinguished record of polling on behalf of prominent Democratic leaders such Senator Tim Kaine and President Barack Obama.
The numbers we are sharing with you today are from a report on their findings regarding the mood of the country, the top issues of concern for Bermudians and whether Bermuda’s voters want to continue the current government’s economic policies.
The poll shows that economy, gang warfare, crime and youth unemployment are the dominant issues in the minds of voters, and this past week’s news of more job layoffs and a shooting in Pembroke on Saturday underscore the seriousness of the current problems we all face.
Crime Press Conference
Remarks by Jeff Baron, National Security Spokesperson on Crime, and the One Bermuda Alliance candidate for Constituency 21, Pembroke South East, December 3, 2012
Thank you, Craig.
All of us know that violent gang activity has had a devastating impact on our entire community.
Since the spring of 2009, there have been:
• More than 300 shooting incidents.
• More than 70 people hurt.
• 20 killings.
Each time there is a shooting, we are affected.
With each shooting, everyone in our community feels a bit more threatened, a bit less safe and a bit less sure about Bermuda.
For some members of our community, particularly young Bermudians, this rise in gang warfare means they can no longer leave their neighbourhoods without fear of being physically attacked or even shot at.
Employers understand this, and they now routinely ask job applicants whether they can travel to all parts of the Island.
Even if they are not part of a gang, gangs are affecting the employment prospects for many Bermudians, particularly the young.
Introductory Remarks, Crime Press Conference
Craig Cannonier, Leader One Bermuda Alliance, December 3, 2012
Good afternoon Bermuda.
The One Bermuda Alliance wants a Bermuda that is safe for all its citizens.
And we are committed to working with the police and communities across the Island to make that happen.
But we have to be very clear about the challenge before us: The rise of gang violence over the past three years poses one of the most serious threats to our way of life.
It is challenging law and order.
It is cutting up the island into territories.
It makes people feel unsafe.
Parents worry for the safety of their children.
People at public events wonder if gang violence will erupt in their midst.
Gang violence is tearing at the heart of the black community
School Results Moving in Wrong Direction
By Dr. Grant Gibbons, Shadow Education Minister, November 29, 2012
I’m pleased to hear that the number of students sitting external examinations doubled over the previous year and would like to commend our teachers at Berkeley and CedarBridge who worked with all our students to get them prepared.
We also congratulate those students who did well, especially those scoring in the A to C grades.
Unfortunately, the overall results reported by the Minister were well below our expectations, particularly in mathematics where only 8% scored at grade C or better.
Overall in 2011, 54% of all students sitting the exams received a grade of C or higher. This year, just 28% did. We understand that more students took the exams this year, but the overall result shows we are moving in the wrong direction.
The Minister says that Government is making progress on education reform. The external exam results say otherwise.
Re. Allegations about PLP Candidate
Statement from Thad Hollis – Chairman of the OBA, November 26, 2012
Thursday night’s VSB News raised serious questions about the status of one of the PLP’s election candidates facing drugs-related charges. This was the first time the OBA leadership heard of this.
The VSB report said “Officials of the Progressive Labour Party today are being accused of attempting to pull strings in the judicial arena to have charges of drug possession that are currently a matter of investigation against one of their election candidates held in abeyance until after the General Election…”
This is a serious allegation on two fronts: an unnamed election candidate allegedly facing drugs possession charges and the candidate’s party allegedly trying to interfere with the course of justice.
Since the report aired questions have been circulating unanswered and, more concerning, there have been no denials.
The public has a right to know what is going on one way or another. We call on the Government to clear the air. We hope that the allegations are not true.