Asbestos = No Criminal Background Checks

There are times when living in Bermuda is a bit frustrating and funny and all you can do is shake your head. Yesterday was one of those days.

A Little Background

My friend Maria is a substitute teacher on the island. Couple months ago she was talking about it and I thought, that doesn’t seem so bad. This could be a way for me to spend a few hours out of the house during the fall and winter months. I asked her how do you become a substitute teacher in Bermuda? She told me it was really easy and explained the process about filling out the paperwork, getting a criminal background check, getting all your personal id papers notarized and applying. We met, she even showed me her papers. Didn’t seem too complicated, but I forgot I was in Bermuda…

Sunday I was by myself on the island, Daddy Cool was still in New York with Thing 1 so I started to put all my paperwork together. Made copies of everything that will have to get notarized by a local attorney: my passport, my Visa, my birth certificate, my college transcripts and my marriage license. I even sent an email to Thing 1, to ask her to look in Montreal for my diploma. It would seem I will need a copy of my University Diploma. I don’t even know where that is? In a box somewhere in Montreal???

Yesterday I thought it would be a good idea to start with the criminal background check that is required. Maria had told me where to go request it and she said it would take about a week. Since everything has to be handed by August 1st, I thought I better get this process started. I went to the police headquarters by Cedar Bridge Academy only to find this sign:



Hum! Okay, what the heck? I went in to find out what was going on. All they told me was, “We stopped doing criminal checks on July 2nd. We won’t be doing them until further notice.” But they really wouldn’t say why.

I was wondering what to do so I phone the Board of Educators of Bermuda who processes all teachers and substitute teachers applications. I’m the one who broke the news to them that criminal checks were not being done. Since July 2nd! We are July 20th. She asked me if I knew why? (Really? How The F! Would I know.) I did not say that, all I said was “I have no idea and they told me that they wouldn’t do anymore criminal checks until further notice.” Then I asked, “Does this mean you can apply without one?”

Her answer was, ”No this is unacceptable. I will phone them and find out what is going on. In the meantime, you can file the paperwork but nothing will get looked at until we have a criminal background check and your file will get rejected if you don’t get one.”

Ahhhh Bermuda, you never change. I thanked her and left it at that.

I called her back about 20 minutes later since I had another question about the paperwork and it’s at that moment that I found out that the reason why the police is not performing criminal checks is because they found Asbestos in their offices and they had to move. My question then was, “they cannot perform criminal checks where ever they are?” Well, it would seem that they are simply not working or doing any checks whatsoever at the moment was her answer. She also told me to just drive by every so often to see if the sign is gone or if there’s a new sign indicating where they have moved and are back at doing criminal checks. But until I get one, no substitute teaching.

So, for the time being, I will get my paperwork in order. Drive by police headquarters every so often, but not too often, I don’t want the police to think I am a stalker. That may go on my record…

As I have told my friend Maria, I will just wait until the Asbestos has settled.


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