Singapore: Migrant workers protest for better pay & living conditions

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Article
25 December 2012

Singapore strikes shed light on workers' woes

Author: Heather Tan, Al Jazeera

[L]abour unrest over low wages and appalling living conditions has…draw[n] attention to the…migrant worker community…Several groups of…migrant workers staged labour strikes, protests and sit-ins. [A] group of…construction workers launched a…sit-out to protest unpaid salaries and…dismal food…In response to a strike…in November, the…government deported 29 people and imposed $2,000 fines and jail terms for several others…[M]ore than one million migrant workers…provide cheap…labour in the construction, shipyard, transportation and garbage refuse industries...[L]abour strikes and protests are still "a comparatively new phenomenon"…[whereas] many foreign workers…see…strikes as ordinary…[T]he Humane Organisation for Migrant Economics…has questioned Singapore's way of dealing with migrant worker issues…Political campaigns in the country have often drawn on anti-foreigner sentiment…in an attempt to win votes…

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Article
1 December 2012

Singapore to deport Chinese bus drivers in strike

Author: ANP/AFP

Singapore will deport 29...Chinese bus drivers and prosecute five others for taking part in the city-state's first strike since the 1980s...[following] a two-day stoppage to demand better pay and working conditions…The strikers…did not belong to any union and were questioning why they were being paid less than their Malaysian counterparts…SMRT has promised to look into the strikers' demands, fumigate their bedbug-infested dormitory rooms, find alternative housing in 2013 and open permanent communication lines with its Chinese workers

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