Category: Politics

Power at the ballot box!

Next Election in Singapore: Top 5 Issues Seniors Should Care About

There is plenty to talk about an impending election in Singapore – perhaps one that would feature prominently the next generation of leaders. There is a lot at stake for Singapore given both internal and external challenges facing the country. As the most significant block of votes, seniors do have a big voice and carry a bigger stick with their votes. Here are 5 things you need to pay attention to:

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It’s about time. LTA finally bans e-scooters from ALL footpaths.

LTA’s decision to ban e-scooters from ALL footpath was a good but inevitable decision. It’s about time that the decision is made. For more than two years since the Active Mobility Act was passed in Parliament in February 2017 to allow the use of Personal Mobility Devices(PMDs) on public paths, pedestrians particularly the more vulnerable seniors and kids have been terrified by irresponsible PMD riders. Apart from the rising number of injuries resulting from PMDs, it has been grossly unfair to the millions of pedestrians to have to live in fear of PMDs going at high speeds even in void-decks and HDB estates. Here are things that the government can do more.

Continue reading “It’s about time. LTA finally bans e-scooters from ALL footpaths.”

NDP 2019: Much Needed Retirement Policy to Reflect Changing Demographics

The policy recently announced at the NDP 2019 Rally by the Prime Minister is overdue and the right one. For the senior citizen community, such a policy will support them working a few more years and allow them to put away more savings when they do retire. The legal retirement age will go up to 63 in 2022 and 65 in 2030 – a slow phased-in approach to allow employers and employees ample time to adjust to the policy changes. Here are the reasons why seniors should welcome this policy.

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“Every rider on a personal mobility device (PMD) broke the speed limit on the footpath. Every single one.”

That is what The Sunday Times saw at four locations over three days. The Sunday Times reported on July 7th 2019 entitled “PMDs: A new source of accidents. Speeding PMD riders: Too fast and too reckless” should raise alarm bells for every one using the walkways and footpaths — especially seniors.

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Employers Also Benefit From Hiring Seniors and Retirees

In Singapore, there are a lot of initiatives by the labour unions and government to support seniors and retirees in the workforce. For Singaporean residents between 55 and 64, 58.8% are employed full time and 8.3% are employed part-time in 2017. Among OECD countries, full-time employment in this age group ranks 9th but part-time ranks 23rd. Whether it is full-time or part-time employment, employers are realising that they can also benefit from hiring seniors and retirees in various ways.

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Healthcare Costs is Rising in Singapore Faster Than GDP Growth: How Will This Affect You?

Last month, the PM sounded an alarm that is not entirely unexpected – that as Singapore ages, healthcare cost is bound to increase and hit levels of spending that will continue to break historical records. The Singapore government’s healthcare expenditure has skyrocketed from $3.9 billion in 2011 to an estimated $10.2 billion in 2018 — this means that in 2019, Singapore’s healthcare expenditure would be triple the amount spent in 2011! The PM made it loud and clear that this is not sustainable and Singapore needs to look for new ways to manage and fund the rising healthcare costs – which is only going to get worse at an even faster rate by 2030, where 1-in-4 will be over 65!

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Merdeka Generation Package: S$8 Billion well spent to help seniors born in the 50’s

Like the Pioneer Generation Package, I believe the Merdeka Generation Pack(MGP) is money well spent. When the Merdeka Generation citizens were in their working years, wages and salaries were significantly lower then. Education and other opportunities were considerably less than what our current generation has. For them, there was little opportunity to save enough for retirement especially with healthcare costs increasing at an alarming rate. Add this to greater longevity, it is clear that the Merdeka Generation’s savings for their retirement will fall short of what is needed.

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Raising the GST to 9%: Should Singaporean Seniors Support this Move?

If you listen to the budget speech, seniors are of course looking for the “goodies” that was promised by the Prime Minister a few months back such as the Merdeka Generation Package(MGP). All the social spending, including defense, education, health care and social support expenditures, need to be paid for by the government without raiding Singapore’s hard-earned reserves. To maintain a “balanced budget” and still pursue a policy of social spending that is much need in Singapore’s ageing population, the government of the day needs to increase tax revenue as it spends. Sometime between 2021 to 2024, the government plans to raise the GST from 7% to 9%. On the surface, it looks bad for seniors — but when we look deeper, I believe seniors should welcome this move. Here’s why.

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