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The White Paper Protest // An Opinion from Camille Chew

It’s a little late for me to write about the Hong Lim Park protest that was held on 16 February 2013, so I’ll just skip that.

Before that, I just wanted to share this too. Apparently according to Chan Chun Sing, his comments on the Hong Lim protest was this – Just a group of people not happy with White Paper. That was what he said when he was interviewed on Channel 8 (clip was removed after).

Credits: The Real Singapore

Anyway, I just wanted to share this comment written by a Facebook user, Camille Chew which in my opinion, is EXTREMELY well written and well, she basically just summed up why us, as Singaporeans are protesting against the Population White Paper.

It’s a tad long, but I highly recommend you just read on(:

I was at Hong Lim with my 5month old daughter on Saturday. I really wanted to voice out my opinions but the rain took a toll on my little girl and I had to leave. 

I feel that it is an injustice done to us when the media and the government try to paint a picture whereby we are xenophobics or racists. But honestly, we have been welcoming our foreign friends for decades; working hand in hand with them, forging friendships.

However the problem that has arisen is that we are afraid of OVERPOPULATING. Not that we want to close our doors to foreign talent. I understand that foreign talents are necessary in the growth of our economy, but shouldn’t there be a line drawn so as not to upset the balance? 

In a previous comment, I had made a few examples; I have a personal friend who has just given birth a few months ago, and as the government had stated, we are ENTITLED to a 3month maternity leave. However, my friend had to place her baby in the care of a stranger and head back to work after just one month. Why?

Because her boss had told her that if she had no intention of working, he could replace her easily with a CHINA worker who would cost much lower than the salary she was wielding. What has caused such a precarious situation? It seems that foreign labour is so cheap that it is damaging our own rice bowls. Isn’t this a problem?

Another example was an article I read recently which exposed of a top educational institution in Singapore who rejected our own SINGAPOREAN children and accepted PRC STUDENTS because their parents were able to contribute greatly to the school funds. Is there no cause of fear for my children’s future?! Will my children be deprived of a proper education just because I cannot afford to bribe the school?

4RM HDB has crossed the $800k line

The government keeps talking about helping young couples. Well, here is coming from ground zero. I’m sure we do appreciate the extra increment in the baby bonus, but how significant would that be? With the cost of living going up, when we can barely afford a HDB flat, when child care and preschool fees are shooting sky high, how much can the extra $2k help us?

Somebody posted a retort on Facebook saying that our foreign expat friends can afford one or two private houses while Singaporeans are struggling with one HDB flat. And yet, so much land is invested in building condominiums and private houses. Who are they for?! 

Maternity and paternity leave encouraged by the government yet young parents are afraid that if they take longer leave, they will be replaced by foreigners. 

And also, the whole scheme that has been proposed to help young couples seems to be targeted at the middle income group. How about the lower income group? I know of a few fathers who, instead of having a full time job, work several part time jobs just to earn a higher salary.

Yet these benefits do not apply to them? Not to mention the f&b nightlife industry, the maritime industry, the technical industry and all other special jobs are not entitled to all these extra help! And these are the people who require it most.

I had a suggestion that I wrote into my MP before but I never got a reply. Why not try having an infant/child care at all the major corporations like in the USA? Or at least a childcare centre for every area in Singapore and not just the HDB hubs with higher children population?

I have several friends who are young mothers who all appreciated the idea of having their children nearer to them when they work. They can even pop by and check on their children during their office lunch hours. Wouldn’t that be a better investment to look at rather to spend our people’s money on FIREWORKS? And having childcare available even in the quieter areas might boost baby births as the couples might just realize the convenience and not have to worry about finding a babysitter or a childcare centre which is far away from their home!

Another question that has been on my mind is that politics be politics, but shouldn’t the PAP work hand in hand with our opposition parties to provide the best for our people?! What I see is bitterness and sarcasm and sour grapes from the PAP especially in the recent Punggol event. Why should our citizens suffer for the governmental competition?

Another article I came across that surprised me was the comment made by the minister saying that our men; our brothers, fathers, husbands who serve NS should make our foreign friends feel safe and create a sense of security for them? Our brave men give up TWO years of their lives to learn to protect their families, not strangers. 

Sometimes I don’t even bother keeping up with the parliament as I feel that our PAP speakers, especially the new ones, seem to not make sense when they speak. I understand that they’re a bunch of elite scholars who have studied so high up, greatly educated. Yet what we need are leaders who listen to us, who understand where we are coming from.

Like the minister who said that it is possible to survive on a wage of $1000 a month and afford a HDB. If you want to prove a point, show it in action. Don’t just talk only. Why wouldn’t he give up his luxurious lifestyle and show us how he survives on $1000 for maybe a timeframe of just half a year?

We don’t need the PAP to tell us “oh the statistics say it is possible” or “research and analysis shows that this can be done”. We are humans, not robots. 

I have a friend who has 7 children. Her husband had left her, and she has to look after her aging mother. She works two jobs and takes home a salary of $1000 plus. Yet she has been surviving all this while without help from the government. THESE are the people who have the right to say “hey look, it is possible!” Not a minister who has been living comfortably all his life.

I do not know how to run a government, neither do I know how to run a country. But I know how to run my family. And Singaporeans are one big family. And we are just protecting our family.

Credits: Camille Chew
Original Post at:  Say “No” to an overpopulated Singapore Facebook Page

This definitely deserves a share don’t you think?

Till later,
♥ mitsueki

Author: mitsueki

Hello! I'm mitsueki aka Daphne and I blog at mitsueki.sg! Follow me on IG for more updates too!

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