Surgery not covered by insurance, says boss. Go back to India instead

By Nicholas Lee based on an interview in May 2018 The crowd at TWC2’s food programme grows as the hour for the breaking of the Ramadan fast approaches. Among the non-Muslims is Paranthaman Arulvendan, registering himself with TWC2 for the first time. But he’s not new to Singapore. Arul has been working here since the...

Bangladeshi workers’ perception of Singapore, choice of Singapore as work destination and journey here

Intern Roy Lim was with TWC2 from late April to early June 2018. Among his tasks were to complete a research project, a smallish one in view of the limited time and that fact that it had to be done single-handedly. The attached paper is his report. In his paper, he found that Bangladeshi workers...

More frauds committed using ministry letterhead

In October 2017, we carried a story Fraud committed using ministry letterhead [link] about how a worker was misled about the salary he would be getting before he signed on for a job in Singapore. While, as we explained in that article, we did not know who exactly was the culprit, the fact that a scam...

One million free meals served — a bittersweet moment for TWC2

Media release, 12 July 2018: 1,000,000 – that is the number of free meals served by local charity Transient Workers Count Too (TWC2) since the inception of its free meals programme in 2008. Affectionately known as The Cuff Road Project (TCRP), the meal programme began when a group of TWC2 volunteers realised there were huge...

Life and happiness for some, downward spiral for Alam

By Sun Hanchen, based on an interview in March 2018 Money is not important, they say. Chase your own happiness, they say. Live for yourself, for life is meant to be enjoyed. As a middle class, soon-to-be-university educated, Chinese (read: majority) person, I often hear this advice from my more carefree friends – who are,...

On emotional health

By Debbie Fordyce In trying to help injured and out-of-work migrant workers, we at TWC2 find ourselves dealing with a multitude of issues piling onto the same man at the same time. Some of them, such as injuries, are easier to see than others. Others, such as non-payment of salaries, are straightforward enough to grasp....

MOM accuses us of “inaccurate or false information” — here’s our response

This is TWC2’s response to a statement by the Ministry of Manpower over “inaccurate or false information” in our recent stories. The statement was dated 6 July 2018 and carried on the government’s “Factually” website. From time to time, differences will occur between what TWC2 records workers to be saying in our interviews, and what MOM...

$55 a day and the bright side of things

By Philomène Franssen based on an interview in April 2018 It is quite an unusual story that I got to hear at TWC2’s Cuff Road Project food programme, one Monday evening. Indeed, as a volunteer member of the Communications team, when I sign up to interview one of the migrant workers that TWC2 assists, I...

Policy brief 2018, no. 1: Electronic payment of salary should be mandatory

In the first for four policy briefs for 2018, Transient Workers Count Too sets out the case for electronic payment of salaries for Work Permit holders. The paper points out that “Electronic payment of salaries through bank transfer provides a ‘paper trail’ to demonstrate compliance with payment requirements and reduce wage disputes,” and notes that...

TWC2 welcomed fellow NGOs to Migrant Forum in Asia meeting in Singapore

Earlier this month, TWC2 welcomed 14 foreign delegates to a meeting in Singapore on issues related to work migration. The meeting was co-organised between TWC2 and Migrant Forum in Asia (MFA), of which TWC2 is a member. MFA is an Asia-wide alliance of over 20 NGOs working in the migration sector, with members from Japan...