Tag Archives: Laws & regulations

Discussion: laws and regulations

Paper laws and how workers’ wages are stolen

Proving a salary claim requires evidence. So we ask our interviewees whether they were paid in cash or through their bank accounts. Bank transfers create an audit trail that will prove how much employers paid (or didn’t pay), whereas cash leaves no trail at all and thus disadvantages the worker in his claim. Ripon was  Continue Reading »

MOM claims great effectiveness in a case when the facts point otherwise

The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) responded to our 20 Feb 2019 article ‘Rahman and employer agree to settle salary claim… then nothing happens‘ with a statement on their website. That statement amplifies their ability to help, and implicitly accuses the worker of not seeking help when help was (said to be) available. The worker’s misery  Continue Reading »

Global Compact for Migration: how far off its standards is Singapore?

The United Nations’ Global Compact for Migration (GCM) was adopted by a great majority of UN members on 10 December 2018 at a conference in Marrakech, Morocco. It was endorsed by the General Assembly on 19 December 2018, where 152 countries voted in favour. Five countries voted against — the Czech Republic, Hungary, Israel, Poland, and  Continue Reading »

TWC2 comments on proposed amendments to WICA

In January 2019, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) sought public feedback on some proposed amendments to the Work Injury Compensation Act (WICA). As TWC2 sees over a thousand cases a year of work injury among foreign workers, this matter is germane to our work. MOM’s proposals centre chiefly around these themes: 1. Medical leave wages  Continue Reading »

From overcharging to plain flouting of the law — Ratan’s story

By Katia Barthelemy, based on an interview in August 2018 Each migrant worker’s story is unique. Yet, in all the stories we hear at TWC2, we can detect injustice, lack of respect, abuse, illegal treatment or a combination of them. Miah Mohammad Ratan, like most migrant workers in Singapore, started his journey out of Bangladesh  Continue Reading »

In-Principle Approval: uses and abuses 2011 – 2018, introduction

Introduction Accompanying this introduction is a six-part series of articles that spotlights the In-Principle Approval for a Work Permit (“IPA”), a key document in the import of foreign labour into Singapore. Behind the document is a process that, over time, has shown several weaknesses. What began as a document and process with a laudable aim  Continue Reading »

In-Principle Approval: uses and abuses 2011 – 2018, part 5

Part 5: the Section 6A requirement The long name for this rule is “Employment of Foreign Manpower (Work Passes) Regulations 2012, Fourth Schedule, Part IV, Section 6A”. The clause in the subsidiary legislation says: 6A. (1)  The employer shall not — (a) Reduce the foreign employee’s basic monthly salary or fixed monthly allowances to an amount less  Continue Reading »

In-Principle Approval: uses and abuses 2011 – 2018, part 4

Part 4: MOM begins at last to respond to changing circumstances In Part 2 of this series, we described how workers with salary claims often pointed to the stated salaries in their In-Princple Approvals for Work permits (“IPA”) [footnote 1] as the basis for their claims. However, the Ministry of Manpower (“MOM”) itself took the  Continue Reading »

When medical leave wages take leave of the law

By Ada Cheong, based on interviews conducted in September 2018 Singapore is reputed to be a business-friendly place. A phalanx of blue-green skyscrapers — our central business district — rises up just behind the Merlion. The area is bustling with people in suits and work dresses, working for multinational companies and investors: banks, insurance companies, and  Continue Reading »

Officials to clamp down on fake salary vouchers, but will it work?

The news site TodayOnline reported that the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) “plans to clamp down on employers who abuse salary vouchers — such as by having employees indicate receipt of their wages before they are paid.” The news story was dated 26 November 2018 (Link). On the face of it, this sounds like progress. It’s  Continue Reading »