health and safety of users and staff in our social service agencies (SSAs) are
of paramount importance in these challenging times. With the implementation of
the major circuit breaker announced by the Multi-Ministry Taskforce today, the Ministry of
Social and Family Development (MSF) and the National Council of Social Service (NCSS)
will work closely with SSAs and service providers to ensure the continued
provision of services to vulnerable Singaporeans with critical and urgent needs
from 7 April to 4 May 2020 (inclusive).
services will continue amidst heightened safe distancing measures
2 MSF’s Social Service Offices will continue
to extend social and financial assistance to Singaporeans in need. This
includes the Temporary Relief Fund, COVID-19 Support Grant and ComCare
3 MSF services and funded SSAs involved
in crisis intervention for serious, high-risk and urgent cases (e.g. family
violence, child abuse, self-harm and self-abuse) will continue to operate.
4 MSF-funded residential homes will continue
to serve our vulnerable, including seniors, destitute, persons with disabilities,
and children and youth under statutory care and rehabilitation. For persons
with disabilities with higher care needs, and for clients whose caregivers need
alternative care arrangements, selected community-based centres will remain
open to provide critical therapy and care intervention. We will work with SSAs and charities that provide services to support
the day-to-day living of vulnerable Singaporeans, such as food support, to
ensure continuity of their services with additional safety measures.
important services to be delivered online; non-essential and non-urgent services
to be reduced or suspended
5 Non-essential and non-urgent services
provided by MSF frontline services and SSAs will be reduced or suspended from 7
April to 4 May 2020 (inclusive). Some services remain important during this
time, for example counselling and therapy services. Such services will be
delivered remotely via online services, telephone or video-conferencing.
Service users who have no critical need for these services are strongly
encouraged to defer their appointments until after the stipulated period.
6 We understand that the reduction or
suspension of services will cause inconvenience to many members of the public.
We seek your understanding and cooperation to comply with these measures, in
order to protect the health and safety of all service users and staff. A
detailed list of the services which will continue to operate, and those which
will be reduced or suspended, is appended in the Annex.
Support provided to SSAs
7 NCSS is working closely with its
members to better support them during this period. This includes helping members
strengthen their business continuity plans that will enable their staff to work
remotely where possible, so that their operational effectiveness is not
affected. NCSS will also work with members to put in place or build up their
capabilities to provide services using remote means. In addition, NCSS will
continue to monitor the situation closely to provide timely assistance and
support to its member agencies.