Coronavirus: MOM takes 230 companies, work pass holders to task for flouting circuit breaker rules, stay-home notices

The Manpower Ministry said these workers have been permanently banned from working in Singapore. PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - Since early April, about 230 companies and work pass holders were caught flouting circuit breaker measures at workplaces and stay-home notice requirements, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) said on Friday (May 8).

MOM said the work passes of 29 people were revoked because they breached circuit breaker measures and stay-home notices after the ministry conducted more than 75,000 video calls and inspections on foreign workers between April 13 and 30. The measures were put in place to curb the spread of the coronavirus here.

These workers have been permanently banned from working in Singapore.

Of these, 17 work pass holders were caught for eating, drinking and gathering in groups, while the other 12 were caught leaving their residence despite serving their stay-home notices.

MOM also suspended the work pass privileges of nine employers for failing to ensure that their employees complied with the stay-home notice requirements.

The ministry said it fined 29 workplaces for breaching safe distancing rules, and they were issued composition fines which totalled $29,000 after the ministry conducted more than 15,000 inspections at workplaces between April 7 to May 5.

These work places failed to ensure proper safe distancing and crowd management, conduct temperature screening, and proper tracking of employees and visitors' entry into the workplace.

Overall, MOM noted that the vast majority of companies here were compliant and have put the necessary safe distancing measures in place at their workplaces.

Meanwhile, 170 non-essential firms were found to be operating during the circuit breaker period.

The ministry said that 16 of the 170 non-essential firms found to be operating without approval during the circuit breaker period were issued with composition fines totalling $16,000.

The other firms were issued with stern warnings.

"MOM will continue to conduct checks on businesses and workers to ensure compliance of circuit breaker measures and stay-home notice requirements, so as to keep our workplaces safe," the ministry said.

With the circuit breaker period expected to end on June 1, MOM said that it, along with the National Trades Union Congress and the Singapore National Employers Federation, will issue an advisory to prepare companies to resume operations.

The advisory will include implementing a system of safe management measures at workplaces, ensuring safe distancing, supporting contact tracing requirements, requiring personal protective equipment and observing good personal hygiene, ensuring the cleanliness of premises, and implementing health checks and protocols to manage potential cases.

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