‘Steady progress’ in 25 Alliances for Action launched under Singapore Together movement over past year
SINGAPORE: Under the Singapore Together movement, 25 Alliances for Action have been announced over the past year. These are making “steady progress” in the country’s push to emerge stronger from COVID-19, the Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth (MCCY) said on Saturday (Jun 26).
The alliances bring together people from the community, and private and public sectors to work together on solutions to social and economic issues.
For example, nine industry-led Alliances for Action were convened by the Emerging Stronger Taskforce, which released its five key recommendations to chart Singapore’s post-pandemic recovery in May.
READ: Task force charting Singapore’s post-COVID-19 recovery puts out 5 recommendations
The recommendations have been accepted by the Future Economy Council and will be incorporated into the council’s work, said MCCY in a media release.
The Beyond COVID-19 Taskforce, another Alliance for Action, also recently concluded its work and released its recommendations on how the social service sector can build resilience over the longer term.
An Alliance for Action on lower-wage workers, formed in March, was midway through a series of co-creation workshops to mobilise the community to uplift the wages and well-being of lower-wage workers.
The Singapore Together movement was announced by Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat in 2019 to involve Singaporeans in creating the country’s shared future together.
On Saturday, Mr Heng said that COVID-19 has strengthened the movement’s sense of purpose and uncovered areas that need more urgent action.
“Singaporeans wish for a more caring, just and equal society, and are prepared to play an active part in achieving it,” he said in remarks made on the second anniversary of Singapore Together.
“The pandemic has convinced me that our people have the conviction and will to recover and build a brighter shared future post-COVID-19, and that this future is within our reach.”
An Alliance for Action on online ordering for hawkers, for example, was launched last week to work on solutions to the challenges that hawkers face in going digital.
Many food and beverage business have turned to online ordering and delivery amid dine-in restrictions to curb the spread of COVID-19.
With work-from-home arrangements leading to increased blurring of work-life boundaries, an Alliance for Action on work-life harmony was also launched in February in response to discussions in the Emerging Singapore Conversations.
“The Alliances for Action have made good progress, exploring and trying out solutions to complex issues, especially those that Singaporeans said matter most to them in our Emerging Stronger Conversations,” said Minister for National Development and Minister-in-charge of Social Integration Desmond Lee.
READ: Four new cross-sector groups to develop solutions for work-life harmony, corporate giving and digital inclusion
The Alliances for Action and other partnerships address 15 major themes from the Emerging Stronger Conversations. Themes include social support, environment and jobs and the economy.
Under the digitalisation and technology theme, for example, were the Alliances for Action on online ordering for hawkers, tackling online harms targeted at women and girls, enhancing digital readiness and enhancing digital access for the needy.
Altogether, about 16,900 Singaporeans have exchanged their views in these conversations since the series was launched in June last year.
There will also be more opportunities for participation and “deep dive” conversations to come, said MCCY.
These will include Emerging Stronger Conversations on marriage and parenthood as well as Singapore’s Green Plan 2030.
READ: Singapore seeks public engagement with couples on raising families amid impact of COVID-19
Feedback from more than 100 conversations on women’s development will also be consolidated into a White Paper that will be tabled in Parliament, noted MCCY.
Ms Indranee Rajah said that many Singaporeans have stepped forward with ground-up initiatives to help where needed.
“I have met and spoken with several of them, and am inspired by their generosity and care. I commend all of them for embodying the spirit of Singapore Together,” said Ms Indranee, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office and Second Minister for Finance and National Development.
Reflecting on the past two years of the Singapore Together movement, Mr Heng said one learning point was that Singaporeans’ aspirations for a more caring, just and equal society have found stronger expression during COVID-19.
“With what we have learnt, we will further grow our Alliances for Action in the coming year, especially in the areas of creating new jobs and opportunities, reducing inequality, making further progress on Singapore’s women’s development and building a greener Singapore.”