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Advisory - Foreign domestic workers should stay at home on rest day

Updated as of 21 May 2020

  1. The Circuit Breaker measures will ease on 2 June 2020 in a gradual manner, and in three phases. Phase One (“Safe Opening”) will begin from 2 June 2020 while Phases Two and Three will be announced at a later stage depending on the situation.
  2. The focus of Phase One is to allow some individuals to return to work but social contact remains restricted. In this phase, contact between different households and any form of social gatherings will continue to be disallowed. Eating out will also remain prohibited.

    Rest day arrangements
  3. In line with the rest of the community, foreign domestic workers (FDWs) should stay at home during Phase One, including on their rest days. FDWs can go out to run essential errands and buy meals and they should return home immediately thereafter.
  4. Employers are encouraged to give FDWs a weekly rest day to be taken at home so that that they can rest and re-charge. FDWs who spend their rest days at home should not be asked to work. If the FDW forgoes her rest day, employers must provide compensation in lieu of the rest day. Employers must also continue to pay FDWs’ salary promptly.
  5. If the FDW needs to go out on her rest day, she should seek the employer’s consent to do so on a weekday. She must wear a mask and comply with all safe distancing measures and limit her time outside. There should be no meeting up with friends or gathering in public spaces to minimise contact between different households. The FDW should also inform her employer of her whereabouts, and download and activate the TraceTogether app to facilitate contact tracing.
  6. Employers will be responsible in educating their FDW on the above guidelines and requirements. Employers should discuss with their FDW on whether she goes out on her rest day and come to a mutual agreement.

    Keeping safe and in good spirits
  7. Maintaining good personal hygiene remains critical during this period. FDWs, as with everyone else, should frequently wash their hands with soap. Employers should visit MOH’s website at regularly to keep themselves updated on the latest developments, so that they can guide their FDW accordingly.
  8. Employers should engage their FDW and help her understand that the above measures are important and necessary adjustments in the fight against COVID-19. MOM will continue to conduct inspections on the ground. FDWs who do not cooperate risk being fined and their work passes revoked.
  9. As we all adapt to the new normal, it is important for employers to maintain open communication with their FDW and provide them with the necessary support. We also encourage employers to introduce their FDW to e-remittance so that they can continue to send money to their family back home. Employers can also share with their FDW meaningful e-activities to participate in, such as online lessons organised by the Foreign Domestic Worker Association for Social Support and Training (FAST).