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Employers warned over poor accommodation

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More than 1,000 employers have been warned or fined over providing unacceptable living conditions for foreign workers.

As the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) continues checks, 1,062 employers were reprimanded in 2012, with seven bosses convicted.

Staff accommodation issues were brought to light following December’s strike by SMRT workers over pay and living conditions.

Aside from MOM, the Singapore Civil Defence Force, National Environment Agency, Urban Redevelopment Authority and police are also involved in making sure foreign employees are living in suitable conditions.

Because many foreign workers do not speak English fluently, inspection officers are often able to speak other languages to understand their concerns better, Channel News Asia reported.

“During our checks, we also make sure that we interview some of the workers to find out what kind of problems they face, what kind of challenges they face in their work, and therefore we can help them,” Phua Boon Leng, director at MOM, said.

During an inspection this year, 15 out of 44 private dormitories were found to have low standards to living. If the accommodations are found to be poor, employers will have to relocate the workers.

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