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Around 140 employers ordered to cease workplace operations over COVID-19 breaches since March

Around 140 employers ordered to cease workplace operations over COVID-19 breaches since March

A Ministry of Manpower inspector checking a company's COVID-19 workplace health and safety plan. This includes the company's roster for split team arrangements, and an evacuation plan in the event of unwell employees, especially suspected COVID-19 cases. ​​​​​(Photo: Ministry of Manpower)

SINGAPORE: Almost 140 employers have committed serious breaches of COVID-19 measures since March last year, which resulted in them being ordered to cease operations.

In a Facebook post on Saturday (Feb 6) highlighting the continued risk of workplace transmission of the coronavirus, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) said it had been stepping up enforcement of safe management measures at workplaces.

The ministry also said that since the introduction of such measures in March, it had inspected more than 36,000 workplaces and issued fines to more than 280 companies.

"Close to 140 employers have also been directed to cease operations for serious breaches," added the ministry.

Two COVID-19 clusters emerged at workplaces last month - Golden Bridge Foods Manufacturing and BS Industrial & Construction Supply.

"The continued emergence of community cases and potentially more transmissible strains makes the risk of workplace transmission a significant cause for concern," said MOM.

There was also another cluster, linked to the police K-9 unit, that was identified last month. 

NO LO-HEI, CHINESE NEW YEAR GATHERINGS AT WORKPLACES

In Saturday's Facebook post, MOM also reminded companies that in the lead-up to the festive season, social gatherings such as lohei or Chinese New Year meals are prohibited at workplaces under current regulations.

"Companies may wish to explore alternative means to show its appreciation, such as via virtual celebrations or care packs," said the ministry.

The directive on Chinese New Year activities at the workplace was issued in January, as part of an announcement by the Singapore National Employers Federation, National Trades Union Congress and MOM that work-from-home should remain the default arrangement to minimise the risk of COVID-19 transmission.

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Source: CNA/ac

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