The Singapore government will soon roll out a ‘Return to Work’ programme to help injured workers, stated Minister of State (Manpower) Sam Tan in Parliament.
Speaking during a debate on the budget of Ministry of Manpower (MOM), Tan said, “Presently, more than eight in ten injured workers are able to return to work after accidents and the Ministry wants to do more to help them recover faster and return to work earlier.”
He added, “Not only do workers stand to gain, employers will also benefit from retaining their experienced labour and save on the costs of re-hiring and retraining new ones.”
He also cautioned senior managers to be on the lookout for workplace safety violations. Authorities of MOM are considering spelling out the clear role of corporate officers in ensuring workplace safety.
The Minister said, “MOM will take action not only (against) the company but also hold the senior management responsible and accountable if their actions breach the Workplace Safety and Health (WSH) Act.”
About 66 workers lost their lives on the job last year and two died in the first two months of this year.
Tan pointed out, “While this is a slight improvement, every fatality is still a tragedy which can be prevented.”
He also informed the House that the government will tighten WSH regulations relating to construction sites, to tackle concerns such as lack of proper supervision, communication and coordination of work activity that leads to accidents.