Reactions to the National Wages Council guidelines prove Singaporeans are spoilt brats

  Here I was on a Friday morning, getting in to work a bit later than usual and turning on my laptop to try and jiak zua (aka eat snake) until the end of the day  (give chance la… weekend mood). So I log into Facebook and scroll my newsfeed but all I see are […]

Employers, change for your low-wage workers’ sake!

If you do not know by now, Singapore’s economy and employment landscape is undergoing a change. With the global economy slowing down, authorities and analysts have been calling on businesses and employers to change the way they operate and how they engage employees. In his maiden Budget, Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat introduced measures to […]

Other countries have a Poverty Line..but what for???

Like other countries, Hong Kong has a poverty line which it set in September 2013. Basically, a poverty line is minimum level of income deemed adequate in a particular country. To define poverty, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development and the Hong Kong Council of Social Service both use a level of half or […]

3 things you need to know about all this talk of productivity

Productivity growth has been a hot thing in the news, with several articles about using technology to minimise human effort in doing repetitive tasks, and cutting costs for businesses. In fact, to put it simply, productivity growth is the number one solution to all our problems, be it wages, immigration, public transport, and even healthcare! […]

Giving Back To The Cleaners

They’re usually invisible to us, cleaning up after us and keeping the streets and tables clean. Often they seldom receive a word of thanks or acknowledgement as majority of us Singaporeans are busy with our own hectic schedules. However a group of people have given us a short look into the lives of elderly cleaners […]

If you have been working on contract for a long time, you may have been suckered

  If you have been continuously working short-term contracts, stop. Stop and question your boss why he/she has been refusing to move you into full-time employment. By consistently offering short-term work contracts, an employer can deny a worker job security, paid leave, health care benefits (especially with Medisave Life), paying CPF and retrenchment benefits. It is […]

Do Low Wage Workers Get Enough Help?

  In recent years, many have questioned how much help low wage workers get, if any at all. I came across this FB post of a friend who shared how being poor had initially taken a toll on his dreams and family relationships. Irwan is a sole breadwinner with a family of 3 school-going children. Earning an […]

Temasek Review

A story of accusation…

This letter has been contributed by Jasmine Wong, 41 My mum used to work as a domestic helper (aka maid, amah, housekeeper) for the expatriates back in the 70s. Back in those halcyon days, life was economically unpredictable. Odd-job labourers earn very low wages. My mum’s expatriate employers would stay between 3 to 5 years in […]

Owe credit cards

Wages on steroids: Paying our low wage workers a lot more

  It sounds like a simple solution: adopt the policy of paying more money to unpopular jobs, especially for low wage workers, and our employment situation would improve. To demonstrate that this would work, advocates brought up examples such as Australia, where cleaning jobs earn you almost US$3-4k, or Norway, where bus drivers take home […]

A wager on your wages

During a holiday in KL, an American friend of mine made a comment about a recruitment banner in KFC which advertised for job openings with the hourly pay starting from RM3.50. “It’s bizarre how they don’t have a minimum wage policy implemented”, he exclaimed. “How on earth do people get by?!” Let’s just say he’s […]