24 work pass holders permanently barred from working in Singapore for flouting safe distancing measures

Ministry of Manpower conducting enforcement operations on breaching circuit breaker measures. Photo courtesy: Facebook/Singapore Ministry of Manpower
Ministry of Manpower conducting enforcement operations on breaching circuit breaker measures. Photo courtesy: Facebook/Singapore Ministry of Manpower

The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) announced on Monday that it has revoked the permits of 24 work pass holders for flouting the COVID-19 circuit breaker measures in place. 

The work pass holders were caught eating, drinking and gathering in groups in the vicinity of Tuas View Square, a factory-converted dormitory (FCD), said an MOM statement. 

The MOM also said that in view of the increasing number of COVID-19 cases in Singapore, it has stepped up inspections at FCDs to ensure that living conditions are acceptable, and that the well-being of the dormitory residents are taken care of.

MOM officers will also check that FCD operators and employers adhere to the enhanced safe distancing measures, including ensuring that residents or employees stay in their rooms as much as possible and minimise interactions with those not living in the same room. They are also required to ensure that workers leave the premises only if they need to purchase essential goods and services. 

Between April 11 and 13, MOM officers inspected over 600 FCDs located at Sungei Kadut, Tuas and other locations across Singapore.

“Inspections revealed that the vast majority of the FCDs had instituted safe distancing measures and health checks for their residents. The dormitory residents also had no well-being or salary issues,” said the MOM statement. 

They also found minor lapses at 57 FCDs, with the most prevalent issue being a lack of sickbays and isolation areas. 

"The cleanliness levels of some of these FCDs were also found to be unacceptable. The operators have been instructed to rectify the issues immediately," said the statement. "MOM will complete the inspections of the remaining 600 FCDs in the next two days."

MOM has issued an additional advisory to employers of foreign workers living in FCDs, and other living arrangements to remind their employees to observe the safe distancing measures including no inter-mixing of workers between blocks and where possible between floors, minimise time spent in public area, and to maintain safe distancing in and out of the dormitory/quarters.

The ministry has also told employers to continue to pay the salaries of their workers promptly and look after their well-being during this period. 

“MOM will not hesitate to revoke the work pass privileges of errant employers. Work pass holders who do not cooperate will be fined, or have their work passes revoked and permanently barred from working in Singapore,” said the statement. 

CtoI News Desk
CtoI News Desk – CtoI

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