“They didn’t ask any questions,” said Nor Karno, “unless the managers weren’t in the room. Then the questions came.”

The Transient Workers Count Too social worker was describing his experience giving three talks at Bright Vision Hospital in March 2014. It was a sign of enlightened management practice that the hospital management invited TWC2 to give the talks to their foreign staff, most of whom came from the Philippines and Burma.

brightvision_7133aA total of about 65 employees attended the talks. The first talk was given to nursing staff, the second to physio- and occupational therapists and the third to kitchen staff (pictured above). Some attendees were work permit holders, others were on S-passes.

Topics were wide-ranging. They included working hours, rest days, medical leave, as well as law violations such as working outside of the specified job.

TWC2 is always ready to give talks to employees whenever so invited. It would also be a huge step forward for labour relations in Singapore if main contractors insisted that all their subcontractors send their staff for such talks.