NTUC helped match over 46,000 workers to jobs during pandemic & will help manage cost of living February 9, 2022 The National Trades Union Congress’ (NTUC) e2i has matched more than 46,000 workers to new or secondary jobs from the early days of the pandemic in Feb 2020 to Dec last year. This after the creation of the Job Security Council that was set up in Feb 2020 to support workers at risk of losing their jobs to improve employment prospects. In a media briefing on Feb 7, labour chief Ng Chee Meng also said that NTUC social enterprises will help cushion the impact of the cost of living. He also emphasised that the best way to cope with inflation and cost of living is still by making sure workers have good jobs. And that’s why Mr Ng said that NTUC’s focus this year will be on training workers and transforming businesses; and protecting and representing wider group of workers. On training and transforming NTUC and its affiliated unions have set up 811 company training committees, which are set up to identify the types of training and skillsets workers needed to keep up with the pace of transformation. “We will parallel track by working closely with tripartite partners to upskill our workers at the sectoral level, through tripartite academies,” he added. For instance, NTUC is looking at building on existing academies such as the Singapore Bus Academy to ensure workers’ skills are kept in pace with industry developments. On protecting and representing more workers For lower wage workers, NTUC enhanced the Progressive Wage Model (PWM) in the cleaning, security, landscape, lift and escalator sectors as well as introduced a new PWM for the waste management sector – earlier than planned. The PAP govt extends the Progressive Wage Model to waste management sector, sooner than planned NTUC is also looking into expanding the PWM to potential new sectors such as pest management and strata and facilities management. For older workers, Mr Ng said that raising of the statutory retirement and re-employment ages to 65 and 70 and increase to CPF contributions are in motion. Other workers such as the PMEs, self-employed, youth and women are also a big part of NTUC’s plans. “This year, our focus will be on ensuring fair workplace opportunities for our PMEs, better protection for self-employed persons especially our platform workers, and help for our youth to kickstart their careers with placement and internship opportunities in growing sectors. We will also ensure that family-friendly practices are more pervasive for those with family commitments,” said Mr Ng. Workers at the heart of our work The PAP has been a champion for LWWs’ rights since Day 1 and will continue to do so. Founding Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew once said: “We had grown up in the unions; we had built up our political following working on and through workers’ problems, fighting against unfair treatment and injustice.” For as long as the PAP exists, the interests and well-being of workers will always be at the heart of our work.