Forum: Look into improving migrant workers’ safety and jobs, Forum News & Top Stories

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I welcome the concrete steps taken to set up nine medical centres to serve the healthcare needs of migrant workers (New medical network tailored for migrant workers’ needs, July 1).

The formalisation of a primary care network to provide lower-cost, round-the-clock care for migrant workers is a welcome step.

I urge the ministry to also look into other areas of migrant workers’ lives, such as safer transportation arrangements.

This could include mandating that workers travel on company buses and use seat belts, and giving transportation grants to businesses to keep costs manageable.

An improved wage structure, equivalent to the Progressive Wage Model, could also be explored, as workers in the construction industry have had stagnant wages for more than a decade. A career ladder will also signal to them that they can progress in their jobs.

Work groups could be formed with construction companies and unions, as well as non-profit organisations and migrant worker leaders, to undertake these longer-term initiatives.

Abhishek Bajaj