Written Answer by Minister for Manpower Dr Tan See Leng to PQ on number of letters of consent approved for Long Term Pass Holders (LTVP) Holders in last 12 months
NOTICE PAPER NO. 1194 OF 2022 FOR THE SITTING ON 4 JULY 2022
QUESTION NO. 1852 FOR WRITTEN ANSWER
MP: Ms Carrie Tan
To ask the Minister for Manpower (a) in the past 12 months, how many Letters of Consent (LOC) for Long Term Visit Pass (LTVP) holders are approved in each month; (b) whether LOC applications to work in certain industries are given priority and, if so, what are these industries; (c) whether the Ministry has any measures to prevent exploitation of LTVP holders by employers who hire them informally without contract; and (d) what recourse do LTVP holders have if they fall prey to exploitative employers.
- Long Term Visit Pass (LTVP) and LTVP+ holders who are foreign spouses or unmarried children (under 21 years old) of Singapore Citizens or Permanent Residents are eligible for Letters of Consent (LOCs) or Pre-Approved LOCs (PLOCs) to work in Singapore. LOC applications are made by the employer and LOC holders can only work for the employer specified in the LOC. PLOC holders can work in most jobs and the employer only needs to notify MOM at the start of employment. From June 2021 to May 2022, there were about 1,500 PLOC notifications and approved LOC applications on average each month. The LOC applications are assessed on their own merits and are not prioritised based on industry.
- LTVP PLOC/LOC holders enjoy the same rights and protection as other employees under the Employment Act, including timely payment of salaries, paid annual leave, and paid sick leave. Employers are also required to issue them with key employment terms (KETs) which would clearly set out items such as the employees' job title, main duties and responsibilities, start date, duration of employment if on fixed-term contract, working arrangements such as working hours, salary details, leave entitlements, medical benefits, probation period and notice period. Employees hired without formal contracts or KETs are still protected under the Employment Act. To raise awareness and to ensure that employees do not hesitate to report mistreatment by employers, MOM and partner organisations have stepped up efforts via digital and social media platforms to educate the public to understand their rights and the available avenues for recourse, including when to file a report with MOM. More information, such as the channels of reporting and the "Guide on Employment Laws", can be found on the MOM website.
- Any employee, local or foreign, who feels that he or she has been mistreated or exploited should approach MOM for assistance.