31 more migrant workers dormitories cleared of COVID-19: MOM

31 more migrant workers dormitories cleared of COVID-19: MOM

Migrant workers look on from their dormitory, declared as an isolation area, amid the coronavirus d
Foreign workers look on from their dormitory, declared as an isolation area, amid the COVID-19 outbreak in Singapore. (Photo: Reuters/Edgar Su)

SINGAPORE: Another 31 migrant workers dormitories, housing about 3,700 residents, have been cleared of COVID-19, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) said on Tuesday (Jun 23).

This brings the total number of migrant workers cleared of COVID-19 to 79,000. The figure, correct as of 22 Jun, includes those residing in government-provided accommodation facilities.

The latest 31 dormitories cleared comprise 27 factory-converted dormitories and four construction temporary quarters.

Four blocks for recovered workers in three purpose-built dormitories have also been cleared of COVID-19.

A total of 163 dormitories and 18 blocks for recovered workers in 11 purpose-built dormitories have now been cleared of COVID-19, said MOM. 

READ: Domestic workers should avoid 'congregating in big groups' on rest days in Phase 2 of reopening: MOM

Of the 163 dormitories, 106 have completed the three required steps for workers to resume work. Eight of the 18 blocks for recovered workers have done so as well.

The steps include arranging for staggered pick-up and drop-off timings with employers, and having employers confirming or updating the residential addresses of their workers on MOM’s database.

Additionally, all workers must download the TraceTogether mobile app for contact tracing and the new FWMONCare mobile app to record their health status and residential address.

"Some of the 17,000 residents in these dormitories have resumed working," MOM said.

The Forward Assurance and Support Teams, made up of officers from MOM, the military and the police, are working closely with dormitory operators, employers and migrant workers to complete all the necessary steps and clear the remaining dormitories.

Employers can also refer to the MOM website for the latest list of cleared dormitories and dormitories to be cleared in the coming weeks.

READ: Can Singapore rely less on foreign workers? It's not just about dollars and cents, say observers

As work gradually resumes, MOM urged all dormitory operators, employers and workers to remain vigilant and to ensure that safe working and safe living measures are "rigorously" followed.

Last Thursday, MOM said migrant workers will continue staying within their dormitories on their rest days in Phase 2 of Singapore's reopening.

It added that when the infection rates in the community as well as the dormitories can be "sustained at lower levels for a longer period of time", workers at cleared dormitories and blocks will have the opportunity to leave their dormitories to run personal errands at approved locations.

Most of Singapore's COVID-19 cases have involved migrant workers. 

The Government will build new foreign worker dormitories and refit unused state properties as part of plans to reduce the current density in dormitories and improve living conditions.

By the end of this year, there will be additional space to house about 60,000 workers, said the Ministry of National Development and MOM earlier this month.

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Source: CNA/lk(ac)