Singapore—According to the National Environment Agency (NEA), almost 40,000 people were fined for littering in Singapore in 2018. Therefore, to serve as a deterrent, the NEA is requiring offenders to wear newly designed neon pink and yellow vests stamped with, you guessed it, “Corrective Work Order” in red print across the back.

The NEA said that the vests for rubbish-throwers were redesigned specifically for the purpose of making them even more “readily distinguishable” so that people would think twice before littering.

In a press statement dated on May 7, the NEA wrote, “The National Environment Agency (NEA) has seen an almost 22 percent increase in the number of tickets issued for littering offences in 2018, compared to that in 2017. Last year, about 39,000 tickets were issued, which is an increase of 7,000 from the previous year. The number of Corrective Work Orders (CWOs) issued to offenders in the past year also rose by 30 percent, from about 2,000 cases in 2017 to about 2,600 cases in 2018.”

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Regarding the vest, the statement read, “NEA has also revamped the design of the CWO vest, to raise the visibility of the CWO to increase the deterrent effect. The CWO vest was previously luminous yellow, making it appear similar to other safety vests worn by personnel carrying out work in public areas. The revamped vest is luminous pink and yellow, serving to make it more readily distinguishable.”

The statement also had this to say regarding its new efforts. “NEA’s anti-littering enforcement regime takes strict enforcement action against those who litter, with fines comprising a composition sum of S$300 for the first offence, and aims to deter people from littering. Recalcitrant offenders prosecuted in court may be issued a fine and/or CWO.

Introduced in 1992, the CWO requires recalcitrant offenders to clean public areas for a minimum of three hours, up to a maximum of 12 hours. This regime serves to increase recalcitrant offenders’ awareness of the impact of littering, as well as experience the difficulties faced by cleaners.”

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The agency obviously takes its job very seriously and expects the whole nation to do so as well, as evidenced by the final part of the statement. “Everyone has a part to play in upholding high standards of cleanliness and public health in Singapore. NEA will continue with its educational and enforcement efforts, to encourage members of the public to exercise social graciousness and take personal ownership in keeping Singapore clean.”

However, some netizens seem to be having a hard time taking the vests seriously, with a good many of commenters remarking on the color of the vests, specifically saying that it’s very close to the bright pink branding of popular food delivery service, Food Panda.

Perhaps they were concerned that there would be a mix up between offenders serving their Corrective Work Order and Food Panda delivery guys.

Some seemed to genuinely compliment the agency for their re-design choice

Another netizen chose to compare the colour not to Food Panda delivery, but to the Pink Power Ranger

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Whichever way netizens may react, whether this new anti-littering measure from the NEA will be effective remains to be seen./TISG

Read related: NEA confirms it installed cameras in HDB housing estates – not to detect smoking but for high-rise littering