Parliament Briefs: Panel to study family justice system

Panel to study family justice system

A government committee will be set up to study how to improve the family justice system, with an eye on easing the pain and healing ties when families break up.

This move to address family members' emotional and psychological well-being was announced by Minister for Social and Family Development Desmond Lee yesterday. The committee will include top civil servants and representatives from the social service sector, legal system, judiciary and academia. It will start work by the year end.

Toh Yong Chuan

More local mother tongue teachers

Six in 10 mother tongue teachers in pre-schools are locals, and the Government will continue to attract more of such teachers to the sector, said Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Education Low Yen Ling. She was responding to Dr Intan Azura Mokhtar (Ang Mo Kio GRC), who was concerned that foreign teachers may lack understanding of the local context or speak in different accents.

Ms Low said the number of local mother tongue teachers in pre-schools has grown by 35 per cent from 2015, to about 3,300 today.

Yuen Sin

Stepping up charity, co-op governance

Charities and co-operative societies are set to be governed more robustly under proposed changes to the Charities Act and Co-operative Societies Act introduced yesterday.

A charity's staff or board member can be suspended for up to two years, double the current one year, to provide more time for complex inquiries. Fund-raising appeals can also be suspended at an earlier stage. As for co-ops, the Registrar can order special audits and suspend staff, to protect members' interests.

Yuen Sin

Brighter job prospects for PMETs

The job front is perking up for professionals, managers, executives and technicians (PMETs), with a bigger share of them in the resident workforce.

The proportion of residents being added to the pool of PMETs has also grown, while the real median incomes of workers who are in full-time work have risen, said Manpower Minister Lim Swee Say.

This year, PMETs make up 56.1 per cent of the resident workforce, up from 53.5 per cent in 2014.

Joanna Seow

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 07, 2017, with the headline 'Parliament Briefs'. Print Edition | Subscribe