Forum: Why not dispense help directly?

Commuters boarding a bus outside Braddell MRT station.
Commuters boarding a bus outside Braddell MRT station.ST PHOTO: LIM YAOHUI

Under this year's Public Transport Voucher Exercise, vouchers will be available to more lower-income households.

Those who qualify for the vouchers can apply for them at their local community centre or club (Needy commuters to get more support as transport fares go up, Oct 9).

But why is there a need to apply for these vouchers?

Why not send them directly to households, as was done with the GST Vouchers, instead of getting individual households to jump through hoops to get them?

Wouldn't that be more expedient? The Straits Times senior transport correspondent Christopher Tan stated in his latest commentary: "Currently, more than one-third of those who qualify for transport vouchers do not get them, for whatever reason." (New approaches to funding public transport system might be needed, STOnline, Oct 10).

And it happens in other areas too.

Why not send (the Public Transport Vouchers) directly to households, as was done with the GST Vouchers, instead of getting individual households to jump through hoops to get them?

A friend nearly missed the deadline to apply for the Silver Housing Bonus because an HDB officer did not inform her about it while she was switching to a smaller flat.

I wonder how many people failed to take advantage of the bonus because they did not keep abreast of the news.

Ong Seok Khim

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 11, 2019, with the headline 'Why not dispense help directly?'. Print Edition | Subscribe