The New Paper: Jobless and unpaid, foreign workers face daunting fate

The difficulties faced by foreign workers in Singapore seeking alternative jobs — even when permitted to do so by the Ministry of Manpower — were highlighted in a story in The New Paper 24 March 2017. The focus was on the men from HBB Engineering and related company C-Plus Engineering, featured in our post MOM...

Harri boss finally sent to jail for salary and housing abuses

In an encouraging development, the prosecutor in a recent case made the argument that using the threat of dismissal and repatriation to compel foreign workers to accept lower wages would constitute an offence. According to a news story in Today newspaper, Nallusamy Narayanan, the boss of a number of companies under the Harri name, had...

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...

9,000 salary complaints, 16,000 injured workers in 2016

In 2016, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) received about 9,000 complaints from workers over salaries. These complaints related to about 4,500 employers. This was reported in the Straits Times, 6 Feb 2017, in a story reporting on questions and answers from a parliamentary sitting. Manpower minister Lim Swee Say also mentioned that in the last...

For members of TWC2: Email verification exercise 2017

TWC2 is proud that that we have many long-standing members. But the drawback is that your email addresses may have changed over time. We need to do a verification exercise, and we seek your cooperation to ensure that our membership register is up-to-date. This is particularly as, with the help of students at the Singapore...

Straits Times: Labour Court can’t make employer pay

Islam Rafiqul’s case was highlighted in a full-page story in the Straits Times 19 January 2017. Headlined “Labour Court can’t make employer pay”, it described this Bangladeshi worker’s plight, having been owed over $7,363 in unpaid wages. His case went through the usual channels at the Ministry of Manpower, resulting in him winning a Labour...

Bangladeshi cleaner electrocuted while washing floor

The Straits Times reported, 1 December 2016, a coroner’s finding that Kabir Mohammad Faysal, 29, had been electrocuted while using a water jet to clean the floor at a housing estate. The motor of the jet had not been grounded and he was barefoot as he did his job. The Straits Times reported: In his findings...

Boss fined for raking in $93,000 in renewal fees

The Straits Times reported that Ng Boon Cheng, managing director of Lian Lee Wooden Case Maker Co (above, in ST pic), was fined $60,000 on 22 November 2016 for collecting kickbacks from his foreign workers. The story came out in the newspaper’s 23 November online edition. The newspaper reported that: Ng pleaded guilty to collecting...

Foreign workers hit badly by zika and dengue: better housing needed

One of the most striking facts coming out of the currently ongoing zika virus outbreak in Singapore is that the initial cases seemed to have been concentrated at one construction site in the Sims Drive area. Of the first 41 confirmed cases, 36 were workers at the Sims Oasis project (pictured above). Within a week...

Kuwait allows foreign workers to change employers without employer’s consent after 3 years of work

In a significant law change, Kuwait now permits a foreign worker to switch employer, without the previous employer’s consent, if the worker has worked three years. According to a Kuwait Times’s story dated 6 June 2016, decree 378/2016 “amended article 6 of decree 842/2015 regarding transferring workers from one employer to another”. “The employee can...