Tag Archives: Trafficking

Type of issue: human trafficking and trafficking-like circumstances

Grappling with trafficking is like nailing jelly to a wall

Former president of TWC2, John Gee, was a panellist at a human trafficking forum at the National University of Singapore’s Stephen Riady Global Centre on Saturday 27 January 2018. In his talk, titled ‘Nailing jelly to the wall’, he drew attention to how terms and labels can be misconstrued, and responses can vary greatly. For  Continue Reading »

MOM booklet sweeps forward, then stumbles

Arriving in our mailbox earlier this week was a new booklet published by the Ministry of Manpower, titled ‘6 Simple Steps to comply with Employment Laws’. This is indeed a good initiative; from here on, employers will have fewer excuses not to do things in accordance with the law. The six ‘simple steps’ featured in  Continue Reading »

Rafa and the line between white and black

By Isaac Ong, based on an interview in November 2017 “This is my wrong but I don’t want pay [you] money. Even if I go jail, [even if] I no company, but I still don’t want pay money”, Rafa (not his real name) was told by his boss. 49-year-old Rafa is practically a veteran of  Continue Reading »

MOM wrong to accuse us of ‘inaccurate’ and ‘untrue’ account

On 5 December 2017, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) put up a note on their Facebook page accusing TWC2 of publishing an “inaccurate” account. This was in relation to the story we had posted on 12 October 2017 titled “Fraud committed using ministry letterhead“. We stand by our story. We consider MOM’s accusation against us  Continue Reading »

Fraud committed using ministry letterhead

Sarowar (not his real name) approaches our help desk hesitantly. Despite being in his mid-thirties, he does not exude much self-confidence. Maybe it’s because he knows his English is weak, and what he has to tell us is fairly complicated. However, it didn’t take us long to grasp the nub of the problem: Someone had  Continue Reading »

“Agree to lower salary, or you won’t get your pay,” says company manager

By Wahid Al Mamun based on an interview late July 2017 A lot of things can happen in two months, and Mollah Showrov has learned this the hard way. His right leg is now in held immobile in an orthopaedic boot. I notice how gingerly he seats himself in the plastic chair beside me. Here  Continue Reading »

Migrant workers in Singapore “vulnerable to forced labor, including debt bondage”, says US TIP 2017 report

Transient Workers Count Too is deeply appreciative of the US State Department’s efforts at drawing attention to the evil of trafficking in persons, through its annual Trafficking in Persons Report. The 2017 segment relating to Singapore can be found here: https://www.state.gov/j/tip/rls/tiprpt/countries/2017/271276.htm  Singapore was classed as Tier 2. TWC2 notes in particular these comments in the report:  Continue Reading »

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  Continue Reading »

A Sri Lankan’s story – the blurry line between exploitation and trafficking

Transient Workers Count Too sees a relatively small number of Sri Lankans in the course of our work. There are far fewer of them in Singapore compared to Indians and Bangladeshis. Sri Lankans are an approved source for domestic work, construction and marine sectors, but except for women in the former, TWC2 can’t recall seeing  Continue Reading »

A Singapore company at the heart of fisherman trafficking — New York Times

The New York Times has an exposé on Step Up Marine, a manning agency operating out of Singapore’s Chinatown, and its network of recruiters in neighbouring countries. Young men are deceived and entrapped into horrendously abusive jobs on fishing trawlers, including Eril Andrade who died at sea. Court papers in the Philippines point the finger clearly  Continue Reading »