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...

TWC2 and HOME submit joint shadow report on Bangladesh re Migrant Worker Convention

Transient Workers Count Too and the Humanitarian Organisation for Migration Economics (HOME) submitted a joint shadow report to the Committee on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of their Families (CMW) on Bangladesh. It was submitted via the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in Geneva. This...

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...

Employers should purchase more insurance, salutary lesson shows

We’ll call the worker ‘Byoghu’ in this story. He had worked before in Singapore and quite successfully. But when he returned for a second job, he soon fell ill. In the first two weeks on the job, he had a fever and was given medical leave. The employer decided to cancel his Work Permit on...

Straits Times: Gap in law to protect workers

Journalist Toh Yong Chuan had a short op-ed on page 2 of the Straits Times 24 Jan 2017 following his two reports of workers who could not collect on their Labour Court awards. See these stories on Islam Rafiqul and Sujan Ahmed. He argued that it was important to plug the gap in the law,...

Worker unable to collect injury compensation; MOM says he must be “realistic”

Just like Islam Rafiqul’s case which was told in the Straits Times last week, Sujan Ahmed too is unable to collect the Labour Court award he has been given. Sujan’s employer is simply refusing to pay up and the Ministry of Manpower suggested that he should apply to the State Courts for a Writ of Seizure...

Foreign cleaners’ pay should match local cleaners’

Following news that accelerated pay increases for cleaner will be implemented, but only for local employees, Transient Workers Count Too wrote to the Straits Times. On 16 December 2016, our letter published. Consider raising pay of foreign cleaners, too Foreign visitors often comment on how clean Singapore is, perhaps not appreciating that there is an...

MOM’s Labour Court skirted with enforcing an illegal ‘contract’

Volunteers at TWC2 were alarmed to hear from Sohel Rana, in mid July 2016, that the Assistant Commissioner of Labour presiding over his Labour Court case might be planning to rule in a manner contrary to written law. It would seriously undermine his claim and set an extremely bad precedent. Md Sohel Rana’s case had...

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...

A note to students

TWC2 receives numerous requests from students embarking on project work, or fulfilling other school requirements. While we are pleased that students are keen to find out more about migrant workers and to devise projects to make positive changes in their lives, we find that students often approach TWC2 with preconceived assumptions about the problems that...