Singapore – Sengkang GRC MP Jamus Lim took to Facebook to urge residents to be good neighbours after hearing the plight of an uncle in his 70s still working to make ends meet yet had trouble sleeping at night due to noisy surroundings.
On Sunday (August 30), Mr Lim uploaded a photo on Facebook of himself during one of his house visits accompanied by a story of one of the residents he got to meet.
“Completed house visits for Block 327A this week. Was moved, again, by the challenges that seniors continue to face in our society,” said Mr Lim. He shared the concerns of a man in his 70s who was still working because he needed the extra funds to make ends meet. “But noises by night owls laughing and chatting in the multipurpose hall downstairs would keep him awake at night,” he added.
On top of the “night owls” situation, the uncle didn’t have enough to afford air-conditioning, so he could keep the windows closed and lessen the noises, said Mr Lim. “Living in close quarters, differences in schedules and lifestyles often lead to inevitable clashes such as these.”
“But we can all do our part to be sensitive to others’ needs, and be good neighbours,” said Mr Lim.
Members from the online community extended their sympathy to the elderly in similar situations. They also highlighted the presumption that seniors work “to keep healthy,” noting this was not the case for many.
They were referring to a statement made in 2015, by then Minister for Social and Family Development Tan Chuan-Jin, about elderly people collecting cardboard not to earn a living but to obtain extra income. Mr Tan noted this was a way for them to get extra income or was “a form of exercise and activity, rather than being cooped up at home.”
“All these years empathy from (the) ruling party has not been felt,” commented Facebook user Ang Myot Thant on Mr Lim’s post. “Seniors struggle so much, yet they claim these people have wanted a workout. To this day, the issue has escalated so much.” Facebook user Tommy Tan added that perhaps it was only a minority of seniors who consider working at their age as a means to stay healthy. At the same time, the majority may be burdened by the high cost of living in Singapore. “I feel a good review is necessary.”
“Really like to see some leeway given to seniors 70 and above to take a small percentage of their CPF,” said Facebook user David Firdaus who noted they should be given a choice between working or retiring.
Meanwhile, others commented on the neighbourhood noise situation, saying the police could do more by patrolling at different schedules during the night.
Completed house visits for Block 327A this week. Was moved, again, by the challenges that seniors continue to face in…