Non-Essential Travellers On Stay-Home Notice May Need To Use Annual Leave To Serve It, No $100 Daily Support

Singapore Workers Who Proceed With Non-Essential Travel May Have To Use Annual Leave To Complete SHN

We’re now in the midst of the March school holidays, but thanks to the spread of Covid-19, this year might be different.

After making exciting plans, some Singaporeans may choose to go forward with them despite the risk and ignore the recent travel advisory.

However, that may lead to a Stay-Home Notice (SHN) once they return to Singapore — worse still, that hey might have to use their annual leave to serve it.

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Tighter restrictions to prevent further spread of Covid-19

As Singapore tightens restrictions to control the spread of Covid-19, precautionary measures like social distancing and the barring of certain foreigners from entering the country have come into play.

One of the stricter measures is the SHN, which prohibits individuals from leaving their homes for 14 days, to reduce contact with others. The SHN applies to these groups of people:

  • All Singaporeans, permanent residents and long-term pass holders who have returned from Italy, France, Spain, and Germany within the last 14 days.
  • Travellers — including Singaporeans and local residents — arriving from Japan, the United Kingdom, Switzerland and all ASEAN countries.
  • Travellers showing any sign of fever or respiratory symptoms at international checkpoints — regardless of their swab test results for Covid-19.

Read more about them in the articles below.

Travellers Entering S’pore With Covid-19 Symptoms To Serve Stay-Home Notice, Even If They Test Negative

S’pore Discourages Non-Essential Travel, Incoming Passengers From 12 Countries To Serve Stay-Home Notice

Some workers may have to use annual leave for SHN

As the government has advised the public to forego non-essential travels for now, workers who decide to proceed anyway may have to serve the SHN.

Depending on their company’s policies, some workers may have to use their own annual leave to complete their SHN, The Straits Times (ST) reported on Monday (16 Mar).

This apparently also pertains to workers on quarantine and company-required Leave of Absence (LOA).

If workers don’t have enough annual leave to serve the full 14 days, they may have to use advance or unpaid leave to serve SHN.

This is all dependent on the policy of their employers.

Image courtesy of AFP

Workers who proceed with non-essential travel not eligible for support

ST also reported that effective from Monday, workers who continue with non-essential travel will not be eligible for the $100 daily support for workers serving their SHN.

On the other hand, if employers send workers abroad for work-related purposes, they are strongly encouraged to provide them with extra paid leave, if necessary.

The extra paid leave is intended to be used for any delays or inconveniences that may surface due to Covid-19 and cause the worker to be unable to work, such as flight cancellations, the serving of SHN or isolation periods.

Employers are also to remain agreeable to workers’ requests to avoid work-related travel, and not hold such requests against them in any way.

Employers and workers should communicate well

In the joint statement, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) and National Trades Union Congress and the Singapore National Employers Federation urged employers to communicate effectively with their workers so that they can implement their travel policies clearly.

It’s a harsh blow to many, but it might be the only way to get people to give up their precious holiday plans.

In light of these changes, airlines like Singapore Airlines have been understanding and are offering free rebooking of flights to help those whose travel plans have been affected.

We urge everyone to follow the necessary precautionary measures and keep vigilant. Covid-19 isn’t going anywhere anytime soon, and it’s about time we tackle it properly.

Featured image adapted from Facebook

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