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Status And Data On The Public Assistance Scheme

Type: Parliamentary Questions

Topic(s): Financial Assistance & Social Support


Mr Leon Perera askedthe Minister for Social and Family Development (a) with regard to subsidised hawker meals provided to recipients of the Public Assistance scheme through meal coupons or a Special Grant Card by Community Clubs and Citizen Consultative Committees, whether the scheme is still operational; (b) how many recipients did it benefit and how much was spent on it in each year since inception; and (c) whether this scheme can be expanded to keep hawker food affordable for the needy.

Answer

1 The subsidised hawker meals provided to recipients who show their Public Assistance/Special Grant Card1 are community-led initiatives. MSF does not have data on these initiatives.

2 The Government supports households who require assistance with food-related needs in a number of ways. For instance, ComCare beneficiaries receive comprehensive support that includes cash assistance for food expenses. As part of the support to households affected by COVID-19, the Government2 issued grocery vouchers to eligible households to defray living expenses.

3 The community plays a strong complementary role with various initiatives. Through the cross-sector Charity Food Workgroup, the Government, community partners and corporates work together to enhance food support and coordination on the ground.

1 ComCare Long-Term Assistance (LTA) recipients will receive a Public Assistance/Special Grant Card, which they can use to obtain subsidised medical treatment at Government polyclinics/hospitals and Government restructured hospitals. Some community initiatives use the Public Assistance/Special Grant Card as a form of identifier of lower-income households.

2 Including the Community Development Councils (CDCs)