MOM to allow up to 500 migrant workers to move within the community each week
Vaccinated migrant workers will be allowed to move within the community as part of a pilot starting Sept 13: MOM
Vaccinated migrant workers will be allowed to move within the community as part of a pilot starting Sept 13, said the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) on Thursday.
The move is part of the gradual easing of movement restrictions for migrant workers living in dormitories. For a start, up to 500 vaccinated migrant workers from certain dormitories will be able to visit pre-identified locations for six hours each week. The first identified location is Little India.
Those from dormitories with good safe living measures, no positive Covid-19 cases in the last two weeks and high vaccination rates will be allowed to visit. They will need to take an Antigen Rapid Test (ART) before and three days after the visit.
MOM said it will evaluate the pilot after a month to see how it can safely expand its scope and scale.
With the relaxed curbs, migrant workers will also be able to visit recreation centres (RCs) more frequently, up to two times a week. The workers will be able to visit the RCs within 48 hours of their negative polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test or 24 hours of their negative ART result, as part of the new mandatory ART between their rostered routine testing.
Workers looking to visit the RCs for the second time in the same week outside their baseline test windows can also do so with a negative ART result which they can take at the RC.
MOM said it will work with non-governmental organisations (NGOs) to introduce activities such as movie screenings, wellness, sporting and leisure events, and religious services at the RCs and in dormitories.
Organised excursions by NGOs for vaccinated migrant workers to local attractions will also resume, after being suspended since Phase 2 (Heightened Alert). The workers will need to take pre-event ART tests.
The manpower ministry noted that the dormitories are now "more resilient" with over 90 per cent of workers having completed the full regimen of vaccination, it said in a press statement.
It added that it has also rolled out a "multi-layered" strategy to test, detect and contain the spread of Covid-19, and is now better prepared to handle any outbreaks. "We seek the support of all our stakeholders, including our migrant workers, employers, dormitory operators and the general public, to keep our workers and the community safe," MOM said.
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