Will a housewife wanting to rejoin the workforce get support to find a suitable job, and what will the Government do to prevent older workers from being left behind?
These were some of the questions raised by grassroots leaders on behalf of residents at a dialogue in English organised by the People's Association (PA) yesterday.
The dialogue was the first of a series of PA Kopi Talk sessions themed "Adapt and Grow: Good Jobs, Better Careers For All".
At least three more are planned for this and next month, and will be conducted in Mandarin, Malay and Tamil.
About 250 people, including grassroots volunteers, representatives from community partners and PA staff attended the session held at The Grassroots' Club in Yio Chu Kang.
The dialogue sessions are aimed at raising awareness of the Ministry of Manpower's recently enhanced Adapt and Grow initiative - meant to help workers displaced by the economic downturn and restructuring, including mid-career professionals, managers, executives and technicians (PMETs), find jobs.
The Professional Conversion Programme, which helps people to change careers or jobs, has been improved to encourage employers to place workers in mid-level roles rather than only entry-level ones, for instance.
Manpower Minister Lim Swee Say, who chaired the dialogue, said such sessions are essential in helping employers and job seekers understand his ministry's initiatives.
Challenges faced by mature PMETs, for instance, include having to take pay cuts or take on a job they do not have the skills for.
"The more people understand (the support we provide)... the more we can help employers, such as small and medium-sized enterprises, meet their manpower requirements, and at the same time help more job seekers find the jobs they are looking for," he said.
"We need to make the understanding of this knowledge as pervasive as possible."