If you thought the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) was the only agency/organisation that can protect your employment rights, you might be wrong.
In fact, two other agencies help voice and protect the rights of workers and employers: NTUC and the Singapore National Employers Federation (SNEF).
Together, these three partners have worked together to solve problems to achieve social and economic progress. These relationship is known as Tripartism. While it is not a term known just in Singapore only, Singapore’s brand of tripartism has brought mutual benefit to employers, workers and the society at large.
Here are 5 things that Tripartism has done for Singapore:
1.) Tripartite Committees and Task forces to improve employment practices
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2.) Singapore Tripartism Forum
The STF was set up to institutionalise and strengthen tripartism. It provides a platform for the tripartite partners to discuss concerns and work together to overcome challenges faced by workers and employers.
3.) Tripartite Initiatives
Since it was formed, the STF has through its various committees and task forces introduced 9 initiatives including, Best Sourcing, Work-Life Harmony, and Re-employment of Older Employees.
4.) Unique form of Tripartism
Singapore’s brand of tripartism is the envy of many countries and has been acknowledged by the International Labour Organisation (ILO) as a useful model, as noted by Singapore’s Speaker of Parliament, Halimah Yacob.
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said at the 2011 NTUC National Delegates’ Conference that Tripartism is “an intangible national treasure” which has to be preserved at all costs.
The new buzzword is also a tripartite movement to tackle Singapore’s workforce challenges by allowing Singaporeans, opportunities to develop their fullest potential throughout life. The movement is led by a council made up of members from various government ministries, unions, employers and education institutions.