Singapore strengthens fair employment guidelines

Employers are encouraged to consider employees’ cultures, values, and beliefs in any activities, programmes or policies that are not work-related.
By: | February 1, 2023

The Tripartite Guidelines on Fair Employment Practices (TGFEP) in Singapore will be revised in mid-February, placing a higher emphasis on employers being sensitive to the diverse cultures, values, and beliefs of their employees.

Performance and promotions should be based solely on work-related criteria under the enhanced TGFEP. Employees should not be expected or pressured to participate in non-work-related events, programmes, or policies, and should not be penalised for refusing to participate. Employers should also create a safe environment where employees may express any issues or grievances, as well as demonstrate and communicate the importance of creating a harmonious and inclusive work environment.

Patrick Tay, Assistant Secretary-General of the National Trades Union Congress (NTUC), wrote in a Facebook post that employers and employees are increasingly showing support for various causes at the workplace, even if these causes are unrelated to the business or job.

He highlighted that this could result in misunderstandings and frictions due to different backgrounds and beliefs, hence the need to create and sustain a unified workplace environment where individuals of various backgrounds, abilities, and beliefs can feel respected, valued, and engaged.

READ: Promoting workplace diversity and fairness in Singapore

A joint statement released by the Ministry of Manpower, Singapore National Employers Federation and NTUC, also urged employers to follow fair employment practices, including the new ones, outlined in the TGFEP. Work pass privileges may be revoked for employers who do not adhere to the guidelines.