Migrant workers must stay in dorms on rest days in initial period of phase 2: MOM

With daily movement in and out of dorms, there is a need to be vigilant to ensure that workers remain free of Covid-19. PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - Migrant workers must continue to remain in their dormitories on their rest days as the second phase of Singapore's reopening starts on Friday (June 19).

This is to minimise the risk of a new wave of infections, said the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) on Thursday.

It added that the movement of workers beyond workplaces poses additional risks of cross-infections with the general community.

When infection rates in both the community and dormitories are kept at lower levels for a longer period of time, workers staying in places that have been cleared of Covid-19 will be able to leave the dorms to run personal errands at approved locations, such as recreation centres, the ministry said.

In the meantime, workers can access communal facilities at dorms. Employers must also continue to ensure food and daily necessities are provided to their workers in dorms.

The authorities had announced on Monday that most businesses and social activities will be allowed to resume from Friday as Singapore enters phase two of its reopening.

Dine-in at eateries and small group gatherings of up to five people are allowed in the second phase.

Migrant workers living in dorms have accounted for 94 per cent of all Covid-19 cases in Singapore so far.

"A wave of new infections will set back the hard work of the many stakeholders and the workers themselves in clearing the dormitories over the past months," said MOM.

"Therefore, in the immediate period entering into phase two of the reopening, migrant workers will continue to stay within their dormitories on their rest days."

MOM said that with daily movement in and out of dorms, there is a need to be vigilant to ensure that workers remain free of Covid-19.

It noted that there will already be some risk of infections being brought from workplaces back to cleared dorms.

MOM and the inter-agency task force handling the outbreak in dorms have been clearing workers of Covid-19, and about 75,000 of them are now living in cleared premises.

This means that they have tested negative for the virus or have fully recovered from it, and are residing in accommodation where fellow residents have been cleared of the virus.

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