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Written Answer by Mrs Josephine Teo Minister for Manpower to PQ on statistics on complaints received by Tripartite Alliance for Dispute Management in areas of wrongful dismissal, retrenchment and contractual termination

NOTICE PAPER NO. 2131 OF 2020 FOR THE SITTING ON 05 JUN 2020
QUESTION NO. 1737 FOR WRITTEN ANSWER

MP: Mr Patrick Tay Teck Guan


To ask the Minister for Manpower whether she can provide a statistical breakdown of complaints received by the Tripartite Alliance for Dispute Management (TADM) from 1 April 2019 to 31 May 2020 in the areas of (i) wrongful dismissal (ii) retrenchment and (iii) contractual termination.

Answer

  1. Table 1 below provides a breakdown of claims related to wrongful dismissal, retrenchment benefit and salary-in-lieu of notice received by the Tripartite Alliance for Dispute Management (TADM) between 1 April 2019 and 30 April 2020.

    Table 1: Breakdown of selected types of claims received by TADM
       Average number of claims per month
    (Apr 19 - Dec 19)
    Average number of claims per month
    (Jan 20 - Mar 20) 
    Number of claims in Apr 20 
    Wrongful dismissal claims filed under Section 14 of the Employment Act   81  88  172
    Claims for retrenchment benefit   6  5  9
    Claims for salary-in-lieu of notice   128  130  171
    Note: An employee who filed multiple types of claims may be counted more than once.

  2. In anticipation of the increase in claims since the start of the Circuit Breaker, MOM has strengthened the support to both employees and employers to resolve end-of-employment disputes. Where employees have filed wrongful dismissal claims, a good number have been due to the abrupt manner of termination rather that unfair terms – most employers have fulfilled their contractual obligations. With the complainants’ agreement, we refer them to Workforce Singapore or e2i for employment facilitation.
  3. We recognise that this is a period of unusual stress for employers and employees alike. Regardless of their business circumstances, all employers should carry out termination of employment contracts fairly, responsibly and sensitively. They must continue to adhere to employment laws, contractual terms, and the relevant tripartite advisories[1]. Employees are also encouraged to engage their employers to seek clarity on issues of concern. Where there are irresponsible practices by employers, MOM will investigate and take enforcement actions as necessary.

FOOTNOTE

  1. Tripartite Advisory on Managing Excess Manpower and Responsible Retrenchment and Advisory on Salary and Leave Arrangements during Circuit Breaker.