31 January 2018

On 18 January 2018, the Ministry of Manpower (“MOM”) released a consultation paper seeking feedback on areas being considered in the review of the Employment Act (“EA”). The consultation closes on 15 February 2018.

The EA is Singapore’s main employment legislation. It sets out the basic terms and working conditions for employees while balancing employers’ need to stay competitive.

MOM seeks public feedback on the following broad areas of review which have been identified by the tripartite partners (MOM, the National Trades Union Congress (NTUC) and the Singapore National Employers Federation (SNEF)):

  • Extending core provisions to all employees: Currently, the core provisions of the EA, such as public holiday and sick leave entitlements, timely payment of salary and allowable deductions, and redress for wrongful dismissal, cover all employees except managers and executives earning more than S$4,500 per month. MOM seeks views on whether such core provisions should be extended to all employees.
  • Additional protection for more vulnerable employees: Part IV of the EA provides additional protection for more vulnerable employees. The additional protection relates to time-based provisions such as annual leave, hours of work, overtime pay and rest day. Currently, these cover non-workmen earning up to S$2,500 per month, and workmen earning up to S$4,500 per month. MOM seeks views on the appropriate level for these salary thresholds.
  • Enhancing dispute resolution services: Currently, statutory and contractual salary-related disputes are heard by the Employment Claims Tribunals (ECT), while wrongful dismissal claims are heard by MOM. Given that dismissal-related claims are usually coupled with salary issues, the affected employee has to go to two different parties for their issues to be resolved. MOM seeks views on how it can streamline the dispute resolution process for employees and employers.

Reference materials

The following materials are available on the MOM website www.mom.gov.sg:

 

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