The government’s seemingly piecemeal dissemination of information and directives in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic has most definitely led to confusion on the part of the authorities as to how to police the new rules.
From what a F&B workers Mabel Ng wrote on her Facebook post, it would appear that essential workers are left with nowhere to have their lunch apart from the toilet!
She wrote, “Its now against the law to eat anywhere you could get caught and perhaps fined, putting all of us F and B frontliners in a tight spot when it comes to our lunch breaks.”
How is that fair?
They are out there risking their lives to provide an essential service and yet we are asking them to eat in the toilet? Why are the authorities enforcing government directives without the use of common sense?
Ng ended up having to eat her lunch in the toilet of another mall after being chased out by security when she was eating her lunch in front of her own stall!
She says that there has been some “blind implementation” of the rules. The rules are clearly to stop people from loitering unnecessarily and not to prevent people who are doing front line work from having their lunch!
This seemingly illogical means of enforcement could be in large part down to confusion as to what the rules actually entail leading authorities to err on the side of caution and throw logic to the wayside.
It is appalling and ridiculous that people who are working at essential jobs despite the outbreak of COVID-19 have nowhere to eat when we should be celebrating and praising them for their sacrifice!
This kind of policing sends out the wrong message and could end up bringing down the morale of those who still have to go out and work.
Yesterday, Ministry of Health clarified that Taxi drivers and food delivery riders can eat at public spaces or in their vehicles if it is not practical for them to head home for meals. That was days after the ban to dine in at eateries and hawker centres kicked in on the 7 April, with many stating that they did not know where to eat during their shifts. A photo showing a taxi driver eating from the back of his taxi, pained many Singaporeans who know how hard is it to drive for long hours especially now, where there is little to no customers to pick up.
To prevent further incidences of “brainless” enforcement, perhaps a government minister could speak out in praise of such essential workers and categorically state that these “no dining in” policies are meant for customers not workers!