One quarter of Labour Court salary orders unpaid

At the parliamentary sitting of 9 January 2017, Nominated Member of Parliament Kok Heng Leun posed a question to the Minister for Manpower Lim Swee Say (pictured above). As published in the Hansard, Labour Court Orders on Employee Salary Non-payment Mr Kok Heng Leun asked the Minister for Manpower (a) how many complaints about salary non-payment...

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Average recruitment cost hit $15,000 in 2015 for first-time Bangladeshi construction workers

After hearing anecdotal reports of ‘agent fees’ in the region of $17,000 or $18,000, Transient Workers Count Two carried out a pilot survey to determine if these were rare cases, or if recruitment costs have risen dramatically. An earlier research report published in 2012, Worse off for working? found that Bangladeshi workers needed to work...

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Was there no prosecution in 2016 for non-payment of salaries?

As 2016 came to a close, TWC2 trawled through the website of the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) to see what prosecutions have been listed there through the year. MOM issues press releases whenever an employer has been sentenced in court. TWC2 found twelve mentions in MOM’s website through 2016. The list is shown further down. What...

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TWC2 survey: starting salaries for migrant workers flatlined for the last 10 years

Starting basic salaries for first-time workers from India and Bangladesh have remained more or less static since 2006, averaging slightly under Singapore dollars 600 per month. However, when adjusted for inflation, a downward trend is seen, and thus, in terms of Singapore purchasing power, average basic salaries have declined about 20% since 2006. The above...

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‘This is so real’: Reflections on 32 months with The Cuff Road Project

By Shona Loong It is Saturday, 17 September 2016: Tito is in tears. He is being sent home after just six months in Singapore. His boss has bought him a plane ticket for this evening. This is already an extension of sorts: three days ago, his work-permit was cancelled and he was made to board...

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Reflections: Wica and Labour Court processes

Most interns who spend 6 – 9 weeks with TWC2 are asked to wrap up their internship with an essay on a specific topic. Law student Pranay Arvind Suryavanshi spent his mid-year vacation 2016 with us assisting with casework and the Labour Court Research Project. In the process, he came across many foreign workers who...

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Reflections: Salary issues faced by migrant workers

Most interns who spend 6 – 9 weeks with TWC2 are asked to wrap up their internship with an essay on a specific topic. Rebecca spent her mid-year vacation 2016 with us assisting with casework and the Labour Court Research Project. In the process, she came across many foreign workers who had suffered salary non-payment or...

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The price of a job

TWC2’s latest research takes a detailed look at recruitment costs borne by female domestic workers in Singapore. Based on a survey of 232 workers conducted in early 2016, the study reveals how much they paid, to whom, and how many months’ of salary deductions these payments represented. It also gathered their opinions as to what...

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Diluted Justice: Protection and redress for trafficked fishermen in Asia

A joint research by Dr Sallie Yea and Transient Workers Count Too (TWC2) reveals that trafficked fishermen face insurmountable barriers to access legal and economic justice and protection. These barriers are caused by the following factors: significant gaps in measures for victim identification, a lack of coordinated support for the psycho-social needs and well-being of...

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Some workers get to cook, others have to put up with bad catered food

By Seah Bei Ying Most of us have seen some Bangladeshi workers having their packed lunches in void decks in heartland areas. Where the lunch come from? Did they buy curry and rice from the nearby coffee shop for their everyday meals? If yes, then how much did their costs come to? These are fleeting thoughts that...

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