1.3 million reusable cloth masks to be donated to migrant workers, Latest Singapore News - The New Paper

1.3 million reusable cloth masks to be donated to migrant workers

This article is more than 12 months old

Firms, charities and donors have come together to provide 1.3 million reusable cloth masks to Singapore's migrant workers under a community initiative called MaskForce.

The masks, which have a filter pocket, come with 650,000 surgical masks that can be inserted as filters.

Temasek Foundation, one of the effort's organisers, said in a statement yesterday that contributions from 21 donors and sponsors helped in getting the masks.

The masks will be distributed to 400,000 workers living mostly in dormitories and 250,000 domestic helpers here.

Infections at foreign worker dormitories have continued to spike in recent days, making up the majority of Singapore's total number of Covid-19 cases.

The Government has since made it mandatory to wear masks when not at home.

Senior Minister of State for Community and Youth Sim Ann, who led the MaskForce initiative, said partners stepped forward to help "without any hesitation".

"MaskForce is now prepared to look beyond masks to equip migrant workers with even more items that are practical and helpful," she said.

She added that the initiative, which also involves the Migrant Workers' Centre (MWC), Centre for Domestic Employees and the Textiles and Fashion Federation, will be kept going as long as there is public support.

Most of the reusable masks were produced by local garment manufacturers, with other Singapore firms contributing fabric and sewing machines.

Separately, ground-up initiatives calling for donations to help workers housed at dormitories have seen more than $850,000 raised in the last week.

As of 1pm yesterday, an initiative started by local social media personality Preeti Nair has raised more than $304,000 for non-governmental organisations Transient Workers Count Too (TWC2) and HealthServe - triple its original goal of $100,000.

At the same time, #HOMEFORALL Migrants, which brings together several groups including TWC2, MWC and A Good Space, among others, has raised more than $555,300 from about 5,600 donors.

Those who wish to donate to these efforts can do so at www.give.asia and www.giving.sg/campaigns/homeforall-migrants