Migrant workers suffering under Singapore lockdown
Only 60 people in Singapore have died from COVID-19 since the pandemic first emerged, and 82 percent of its population is now fully vaccinated against the disease. However, to be cautious, Singapore Government has still not lifted the lockdown from the country entirely. It was hit by a series of coronavirus outbreaks last year, centered around dormitories where thousands of migrant workers live.
Singapore is one of the countries which faced longest periods of COVID-19 confinement than any other country in the world. Relaxed restrictions have sent cases soaring. Reopening plans have been delayed and some restrictions have been re-imposed.
After months of relatively low numbers of daily new cases, over the weekend Singapore reported crossed the 1,000 marks for new daily cases, the highest since April last year. The government has called the increase a rite of passage as the island nation adapts and adjusts its hoped-for model of living with. This ideology is opposed to eradicating the virus and its variants.
Singapore Health Minister Ong Ye Kung mentioned that they are on a path of transition to a new normal of living with COVID-19. It is a journey that is uncertain and full of twists and turns. Ong Ye reiterated that the way forward is to take the “middle ground“, and that everyone will need to adapt quickly to achieve this new balance and successfully co-coexist with the disease.
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He urged Singaporeans to continue wearing their masks, and to minimize talking while on public transport, so that taking public transport remains safe for everyone. The country’s success in suppressing the virus has afforded Singaporeans long periods of freedom over the past year and a half. The communal living and working conditions of migrant workers in dorms put them at higher risk of infection and the formation of large clusters thus Singapore’s Manpower Minister Dr Tan See Leng advised they will still continue to live in perpetual lockdown state until the condition is better and entire country is vaccinated against the disease.