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Gov’t to extend progressive wage model to more sectors

The government is working on providing progressive wages to retail, food services, and waste management workers.

Low wage workers, who often found themselves on the frontline during the pandemic, continue to face job security and wage issues, noted Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong in a speech 29 August.

As a way to help these frontliners, Lee announced that the government is studying how to help them more, including extending the Progressive Wage Model (PWM).

“We will cover more sectors, starting with retail next year, and later food services and waste management. We will also cover specific occupations, across all sectors simultaneously, starting with administrative assistants and drivers. In other words, at some point, sector by sector, horizontal. Slicing vertically, across all sector at once,” Lee said.

Recently added to the PWM are cleaners, security guards, landscaping workers, and lift maintenance workers.

The government is also set to require companies hiring foreign workers to pay all their local employees at least a Local Qualifying Salary, which is currently at $1,400. Companies would soon be required to do so before hiring foreign employees.

Also in the pipeline is the Progressive Wage Mark, accrediting companies that are paying their workers the right wages.

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