Being socially responsible shouldn't require rewards

It seems that doing the right thing these days should be rewarded in one way or another (Diners more likely to return trays if given perks; Oct 15).

I do not support any public policy which offers rewards for being socially responsible, and the tray-return reward initiative is no exception.

If eating places have recorded much higher tray-return rates just because of the perks, then what will happen if the scheme is withdrawn in future?

In schools, students learn the importance of being civic-minded, and they would return trays after finishing their meals during recess.

This positive habit has been instilled in them through education, and not by offering them rewards. I am sure students will continue to embrace the tray-return act in eateries outside school.

Hence, it is important for teachers and parents to drive the point home to children that it is everyone's responsibility to return trays without expecting any rewards.

Jeffrey Law Lee Beng

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 18, 2017, with the headline 'Being socially responsible shouldn't require rewards'. Print Edition | Subscribe