Law in place to support employment of older workers

Mr Perinpanayagam James called for legislation to mandate that companies raise the retirement age (Legislation needed on raising retirement age; July 31).

There is, in fact, a re-employment law in place since 2012 to support the employment of older workers if they wish to work longer.

This law was introduced on the recommendation of the Tripartite Committee on the Employability of Older Workers announced by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong in 2005, which Mr James pointed out.

The Tripartite Committee had recommended the re-employment model as a better approach than raising the retirement age to help older workers who wish to work longer.

The re-employment law required employers to offer re-employment to eligible employees, from the retirement age of 62 to the then re-employment age of 65, while providing flexibility for adjustment in the terms of employment, such as wages and benefits.

The re-employment age was further raised to 67 from July 1 last year, again under the recommendation of this Tripartite Committee.

The Tripartite Committee also led efforts in supporting the employability of older workers, such as accelerating wage restructuring to help companies move away from seniority-based wage systems, and introducing the Advantage! funding scheme for companies to recruit, retain and re-employ older workers.

Earlier this year, the Minister for Manpower announced that a Tripartite Workgroup on Older Workers would be convened to review the next moves on the retirement and re-employment age.

The workgroup will start its public consultation in the fourth quarter of this year.

Lee Pak Sing Divisional Director

Workplace Policy & Strategy Division

Ministry of Manpower

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 06, 2018, with the headline 'Law in place to support employment of older workers'. Print Edition | Subscribe