Little that MOM can do in cases of retrenchments?

*Comment first appeared on, a support site for the unemployed founded and managed by prominent labour activist Gilbert Goh:

Dear Gilbert,

I stumbled your website out of sudden and very pleased to read all the articles posted there.

My husband, a PR has been out of job for 12 months as a architectural designer. He has worked in that company for 2 years and was promoted as a team lead just 3 months before he was laid off due to bad business environment..

He was involved in HDB upgrading projects and has experience dealing with BCA and local authorities. Of course, he was happily working as he already has requested the company to endorse him as a certified architect.  He only has 1.5 years to go before being approval by the Board of Architects.

We were thus shocked to receive the retrenchment letter even though he was promoted as team lead. Moreover, he was given another appendix document to sign and confirmed with the company that he would not resign in the next 2 years.

We brought the case to MOM, however MOM can’t do anything as the company has paid him 1-month compensation.

So my question to MOM, what is the use of the appointment letter then? MOM is silent and so far there is no help rendered from them.

Then 2 months later, my husband got a overseas job offer to outstation in middle east with a Singapore company. However, due to political issues of the war his visa was not approved and he lost that opportunity.

Now it has been 12 months, he has not get a call for any interviews. We are stripped of our savings as the days go by. He tried to take up post degree courses but the requirements in Singapore requires so many other documents and involve cash. We ask NUS if CPF special account can be used to pay fees for a Master degree course. NUS replied that only degree courses and below are allowed. The laws are just so rigid that many times it does not make sense.

Life was not easy for us. I am the only breadwinner for the family and juggling between work, home and taking of care of our kid. I am a true-born Singapore citizen as well as my son who just started primary school.

I felt injustice to how we are being treated while there are many FTs who are doing well here in my country, planning for holidays each year and sending their kids to good enrichment classes. I feel envious and stupid as a citizen working like slaves trying to finish the house mortgage loan. Sometimes,  I felt we should just sell our home and renounce our citizenship and go to other places where we will be accepted better.

With this bad economy situation, we dare not dream anymore.




Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s