Chris Furbert, president of the BIU, announced he had come to an agreement with management of Fairmont that would reinstate four hotel workers who had been made redundant, which was the genesis of the strike. *Photo by Nicola Muirhead
Chris Furbert, president of the BIU, announced he had come to an agreement with management of Fairmont that would reinstate four hotel workers who had been made redundant, which was the genesis of the strike. *Photo by Nicola Muirhead
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Statement by Len Czarnecki, General Manager, The Fairmont Hamilton Princess:

“We are pleased that a resolution has been reached between The Fairmont Hamilton Princess and the Bermuda Industrial Union and we are now able to return our focus to serving our guests.

“The next several years will be exciting for The Fairmont Hamilton Princess.  The $90 million investment in the property will help us raise the profile of Bermuda as a destination and help create dynamic new tourism opportunities.  We look forward to working with our many partners in the community on creating new jobs and developing hospitality career training.”





The Bermuda Industrial Union labour stoppage is over.

Chris Furbert, president of the BIU, announced he had come to an agreement with management of Fairmont that would reinstate four hotel workers who had been made redundant, which was the genesis of the strike.

The union says proper protocol was not followed in making those workers redundant, specifically that the hotel management did not give properly consult with the union before taking action.

Earlier in the week, there was a march to protest the redundancies and support the workers. The situation eventually escalated into a full-blown work stoppage.

The strike disrupted public transportation with ferry and bus services being affected yesterday and this morning.

"Everybody will return back to work as quickly as they can," said Mr Furbert at a late morning press conference at the Heritage Worship Centre on Dundonald Street in Hamilton.

He added: "If this isn't going to be an eye opener for the country, I don't know what it's going to take."

Mr Furbert also suggested that public employees, specifically those in the Parks and Marine and Ports departments, had come very close to striking in recent weeks.



Press release from Senator Michael Fahy, Minister of Home Affairs:

Good morning,

Less than 24 hours ago, I addressed you regarding the ongoing industrial action between the Bermuda Industrial Union and the Fairmont Hamilton Princess that stemmed from an employment dispute. 

Yesterday I outlined the steps that my Ministry had taken to seek to bring the two sides together as part of the arbitration process.

Granted yesterday was a day high in emotion with both sides seeking to get across their various viewpoints.

However today I am pleased to note that the two sides, with the assistance of Government have managed to come to a resolution which benefits all concerned. The resolution was agreed to and accepted by the BIU and the Fairmont Hamilton Princess management and I am happy to note that it is anticipated that all employees, including our public service workers, will return to work later this morning.

While I will leave the specifics of the agreement for the BIU and Fairmont to expand on, I just want to touch on the efforts of our Government representatives who worked to bring this situation to a close.

I’d like to thank the Attorney General, Mark Pettingill and his staff, and the Permanent Secretary of Home Affairs Randy Rochester and the Director of Workforce Development George Outerbridge for their work around the clock to get the two sides to the table.

And I wish to also highlight the Green Family for recognizing the importance of working with us to bring this matter to a close for the good of Bermuda.

Without question, this Government recognises the inconvenience that this situation caused the members of the public and our visitors. So we appreciate their patience and understanding during what was obviously a challenging time which saw them directly affected by the disruption of services. 

If anything, these past few days have demonstrated:

  • The importance of maintaining strong relationships between employers and unions;
  • The importance of following the guidelines as set out in the collective bargaining agreement; and
  • The importance of going through the right channels of mediation to find resolution. 

As I indicated yesterday, this Government will always recognise the rights of the workers, however when disputes arise we must be ever mindful that the labour process works best when it is rooted in a collaborative effort.

Thank you.