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Written Answer by Minister for Manpower Dr Tan See Leng to PQ on measures and training provided to MDWs and MWs to raise awareness of their rights and protection under Singapore Law


MP: Mr Zhulkarnain Abdul Rahim 

To ask the Minister for Manpower (a) what are the measures and training provided to foreign domestic workers or other migrant workers to raise awareness of their rights and protection under the laws of Singapore in order to protect them against any mistreatment, abuse or violence perpetrated upon them; and (b) whether such measures include counselling and psychiatric support in their own language for any survivors of such violence. 


  1. Migrant Domestic Workers (MDWs) and Migrant Workers (MWs) attend their respective Settling-In-Programmes (SIPs) conducted in the workers’ native languages, and are educated on their employment rights, Singapore’s laws, and channels to seek help. For example, they are advised to call the Police if they are subjected to any physical abuse. The workers are also advised to seek help on employment issues and well-being matters using the hotlines set up by MOM, the Centre for Domestic Employees (CDE), or Migrant Workers’ Centre (MWC). 

  2. The SIP also covers topics related to mental well-being such as relationship and stress management tips to help workers adjust to working and living in a new environment. Apart from the SIP, reminders with mental health messages such as adopting healthy habits to manage stress and identifying early signs of distress are disseminated regularly to the MWs and MDWs via the FWMOMCare application and e-newsletters. 

  3. MOM partners with non-governmental organisations (NGOs)1 to provide a range of assistance to the workers who are victims of abuse or violence. For example, MWC, CDE and HealthServe operate counselling hotlines to provide mental health support to MWs and MDWs in six native languages2 at any time and not only after an incidence of abuse. CDE also operates a shelter for MDWs where counselling services and legal advice are made available, free of charge. MWC and CDE also worked with Law Society Pro Bono Services to offer free legal advisory services to MWs and MDWs. 

  4. The Assurance Care and Engagement (ACE) Group of MOM is strengthening the mental health support ecosystem for MWs through Project DAWN. Under the programme, peer support leaders among MWs are trained to lend a listening ear and administer psychological first aid. ACE officers deployed to the dormitories are also being trained to provide mental health support to MWs. MWs also have access to primary healthcare services such as the regional medical centres and telemedicine for mental health assessment, intervention and follow up. MWs who require specialist psychiatric services are also promptly referred, when required. 


  1. Centre of Domestic Employees (CDE), Foreign Domestic Worker Association for Social Support and Training (FAST), and Migrant Workers’ Centre (MWC).
  2. CDE’s helpline can take calls in Bahasa Indonesia, Tagalog and Burmese; Healthserve’s and MWC’s helpline can take calls in Bengali, Tamil and Mandarin.