Wah, this Lee Li Lian is quite powerful – whatever she says, the government has been giving! Not bad…. Just look at the slew of goodies we have been promised in the past nine days.
1. Paternity Leave
Lee Li Lian, 19 Jan 2013: ”Young fathers today want to contribute to caring for their babies and easing the burden of their wives. Survey after survey shows that younger men are more involved in taking care of their children.
A number of businesses have signalled to the government that they are open to the idea of government-supported paternity leave because this is likely to increase productivity and well-being in the long-run. Wives have already expressed their support for longer paternity leave for their husbands.
So what is the government waiting for?” Source: Workers’ Party Website
Government’s response, 21 Jan 2013: “Fathers with a child born on or after May 1 this year will be entitled to one week of government-paid paternity leave, to be taken within 16 weeks from the birth of their child.” Source: Straits Times
Government’s response, 21 Jan 2013: “Those with Singapore citizen babies born on or after Aug 26 last year will get $6,000 as a baby bonus cash gift, up from $4,000 before. This applies to the first and second child.
For the third and fourth child, the cash gift will increase to $8,000 from $6,000.
The cash will also be given out more quickly, in three payments over a year, instead of four payments over 18 months previously.
Newborn citizens born on or after Aug 26 last year will also get a Medisave account with a grant of $3,000.” Source: Singapolitics
2. Childcare costs
Lee Li Lian, 19 Jan 2013: “Do you know that fees of childcare centres have gone up 34% in just five years?
In 2007, the average fee for a full-day childcare and infant-care programme was $680 a month. In 2012 it was about $914 a month.” Source: Workers’ Party Website
Government’s response, 23 Jan 2013: “Under the new subsidy framework, all parents will continue to receive basic subsidies of $300 to $600 currently given for child and infant care programmes.
But those earning a monthly household income of $7,500 or less will enjoy an additional subsidy ranging from $100 to $540, on top of the basic subsidy, depending on their income.” Source: Singapolitics
3. Elderly-friendly transport services
Lee Li Lian, 22 Jan 2013: “Our elderly citizens, our grandparents and parents worked hard in their younger days to contribute to the building of this nation. Brick by brick, pillar by pillar, their hands built this country and raised up a whole new generation. Now, in their twilight years, after all they have sacrificed for this nation, it is only right that we provide them the first class care they deserve. This country must take care of our elderly and serve them as well as they’ve served us.
There are so many things that we can do to make their lives pleasant and more meaningful. Such as:
1. Public transport to commuters who are 80 years old and above should be free. If we want to encourage active ageing it is important to help our elderly move around more easily. By making transportation facilities more elderly-friendly and providing free public transport will encourage our senior citizens to lead a more fulfilling life.” Source: Workers’ Party Website
Government’s response, 24 Jan 2013: “The government will spend close to S$700 million to make transport nodes more accessible, elderly friendly and conducive for commuters.” Source: Channel NewsAsia
This, my friends, is the power of the opposition. But more importantly, this is the power of your vote!