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Unemployed father with 20 years security industry experience is forced to sell his house to survive




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An unemployed father, who was unable to land a job for 15 months despite having 20 years experience in the security industry, has revealed that he was forced to sell his HDB flat to survive.

The Singaporean, named Haniff, shared his plight with community worker Gilbert Goh in a letter. Goh, who helps unemployed and underemployed Singaporeans through community work and through his support website called Transitioning.org, published Haniff’s letter on the website, yesterday.

In the letter, Haniff reveals that he has been out of a job for 15 months and that he is unable to land a job despite having decades of experience in the security industry. Haniff shared that he even took upgrading courses to make himself more employable, to no avail.

Sharing that his lack of success at finding a job has left him feeling as though he is “not good enough,” Haniff shared:

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“I have over 20 years of experience in the security industry. For the past 15 months I am not able to land in a job. I tried so hard but no one seems to give my application a chance. I have taken a lot of courses over the years but it seems like I am still not good enough.”

Due to his unstable financial situation, Haniff says that he fell back on his HDB installments and now has to sell his house to survive.

Besides his new housing concerns, Haniff also has to provide for his 14-year-old secondary school-going son who needs money for schooling and other extra-curricular activities: “I am in the process of selling my house as I have fallen back on my HDB installments. I also have a son who at 14 needs a lot of money for schooling and ECA.”

Lamenting that he is at a loss as to what to do, Haniff appealed to Goh for help and revealed that he has already approached the Community Development Council (CDC) and Workforce Singapore (formerly known as the Workforce Development Agency or WDA) for help:

“I am really at a loss and I really need your help to guide me on what to do and who to approach for help. I have approached CDC but they only have guard jobs and I have written to WDA pending for their response…Appreciate direction and guidance from you.”

In the labour market report released in Sept 2018, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) revealed that the number of retrenchments between April and June 2018 rose to 3,030 from 2,320 between January and March. This means that retrenchments in this period went up by over 30 per cent.

The ministry further reported that the Singapore labour market saw higher unemployment rates and that the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate among citizens was higher than the rate for residents. The seasonally adjusted resident unemployment rate for those who have been left without a job for at least 25 weeks also went up.

In the latest labour market report released in Dec 2018, MOM reported that while total employment grew at a faster pace and while the resident long-term unemployment rate declined, the resident unemployment rate held steady.

Although fewer workers were retrenched in this quarter, re-entry rates which rose in the previous quarter declined. MOM added that “The recruitment rate also declined, after holding steady in past quarters. This suggested some caution in hiring.”

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