A Transient Workers Count Two research team interviewed 163 injured Indian and Bangladeshi workers who come to their food programme and talked about their accommodation conditions.
Under the law, employers are meant to provide accommodation for their injured workers even when they are staying in Singapore on Special Passes while their compensation claims are being considered, but in fact, many workers do not benefit from this provision.
Of the 163 workers interviewed, only one was staying in company-provided accommodation – and his employer did not know that he was there. Only 28 per cent of the workers had been offered accommodation by their employers (sometimes, by MOM). In many cases, these workers fled from company-provided accommodation because they feared being forcibly sent home so that their employer could avoid paying compensation.
The study shows that there is a gap between the stated protection for workers under the law as it exists and the workers’ ability to make use of this measure to see themselves through a period of waiting for case settlement when they are not able to work legally and do not have an income.
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