Jose Raymond on second chances and the Yellow Ribbon Project : Isn’t “Every Singaporean a Good Singaporean”?

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Photo: Jose Raymond, YouTube screengrab
 

In a bid to help out a fellow Singaporeans in need of a second chance, Singapore People’s Party (SPP) member Jose Raymond shared a Facebook post about a man who served time in prison and has been turned away by potential hirers since.

The man, a father of four young children and Potong Pasir resident was charged in court for assault in 2016. Even after duly serving his time in prison, he was unable to find a job because of his criminal record.

In his post, Raymond said, “Since [the man’s] release in 2016, he has not been allowed to drive a taxi because of his criminal record. And even though he passed the course to be a security officer, his application for the licence to be a private security officer has also been rejected by the Singapore Police Force (SPF)”.

The question then posed is, how can ex-offenders turn over a new leaf and integrate themselves into society, if society itself does not allow it?

His post, written yesterday, received 1217 shares and almost 600 reactions since.

In his post, Jose Raymond also shared the rejection letter the man received upon his application to be a private security officer.

The SPF dismissed the man’s application by citing the reason of “not a fit and proper person”.

Jose Raymond said that the dismissal “could have been done without having to label him as being “not a fit and proper person”, regardless of how the Act is worded”.

“This is not how a Government agency should communicate with a fellow Singaporean citizen who is trying to make ends meet and feed his children,” he added.

At the end of his post, Raymond questioned, “Whatever happened to giving people second chances and opportunities to make amends and move on after making mistakes?

Whatever happened to the Yellow Ribbon Project?

Why do we need to make it so difficult for someone who wants to turn over a new leaf and start all over again? The only ones who will end up suffering are his young children.

Isn’t “Every Singaporean a Good Singaporean”?

We need some serious soul searching.”

The Yellow Ribbon Project (YRP) aims to give “ex-offenders a second chance at life and to inspire a ripple effect of concerted community action to support ex-offenders and their families”.

Netizens responded with due indignation as well, with some even offering the man rejected by the SPF a job.

 


obbana@theindependent.sg