Charging for trays could breed resentment

An empty plate left on a table at Block 163 Bukit Merah Central Food Centre on Jan 30, 2018.
An empty plate left on a table at Block 163 Bukit Merah Central Food Centre on Jan 30, 2018.ST PHOTO: LIM YAOHUI

It is futile to hope that charging a fee for trays at food centres will help change attitudes.

Customers have responded by either refusing to take a tray, or returning only the tray while leaving their used bowls and plates behind on the table (Customers find ways around tray return system; Jan 31).

Monetary or coercive measures that do not address the underlying causes or reasons for certain behaviours not only breed resentment but can also exacerbate existing attitudes.

Before the Hawker Centre 3.0 Committee makes recommendations to reduce hawkers' workload and tackle manpower challenges, it is important for it to gain a proper understanding of the difficulties faced on the ground first.

Terence Lim