Labour Standards : What You Need to Know

Good news for low wage earners here in Singapore – NTUC (National Trades Union Congress) established a center which can provide assistance. Now, low wage earners have a place to turn to when they are in need of assistance. November 07, 2013 marked the setting up of the very first toll free hotline and service centre for low wage earners by NTUC. The service centre is called U Care Centre nestled at Jurong East. The aim of the centre is to provide assistance and direction when it comes to employment, contract, benefits and other work related concerns.


Whether you are earning low or high, it is important that you know your rights as a worker. Knowing your rights is basic so spend some time knowing your rights. When the time comes, you can use the knowledge and you will not be taken for granted or fooled. When you feel that you are violated, you should assert your right. But are you familiar with the ILO’s (International Labour Organization) five core labour standards? If not, you have to understand it. The labour standards include the following:

Freedom of Association

The freedom of association is the right of workers to join or form organizations based on their preference of liking.


Trade unions (which stand in behalf of every worker who belongs to the organization) have the right to bargain collectively with their company or government.

Elimination of Coercion

Coercion or forcing workers to toil in exchange for something is prohibited. The elimination of coercion and all its forms should be practiced.

Abolition of Child Labour

Children should be studying not working. The ILO set minimum working age of 15 as long as the work is less or light. If the workplace is dangerous or hazardous, the minimum working age should be 18.

Elimination of Discrimination

In any employment, the prejudice of the company base on the religion, sex, race and origin of the employee should not be looked upon.

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