In its national report on human rights published on Friday (11 Dec), the Government said that Singapore has taken steps to give better protection to children, the lower-income and migrant workers, as well as victims of trafficking. It will also regularly review these measures.
This report will be further discussed at a meeting of the United Nations (UN) Human Rights Council between Singapore representatives and other UN members in Geneva on 27 Jan, part of the Universal Periodic Review, which looks at the human rights situation in each UN member-state every four and a half years.
Since its first Universal Periodic Review in May 2011, Singapore has adopted some recommendations which include amending laws to better protect families and children.
It has also crafted a national road map to help integrate those with disabilities into society, and ratified the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in 2013.
This year, it signed the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination and acceded to the UN Trafficking in Persons Protocol. The Government was guided by a pragmatic approach to human rights in taking these steps.
"The realisation of human rights is a work-in-progress for all states," said Ambassador-at-Large Chan Heng Chee, who leads Singapore's delegation to Geneva next month.
"Singapore will continue to review and adapt our approach based on the changing attitudes and needs of our society," she added.
Singapore’s national report was prepared by the Inter-Ministerial Committee on Human Rights, in consultation with non-governmental organisations.
It describes Singapore’s way of implementing recommendations accepted in 2011, its progress in building a fair and inclusive society, as well as preserving social harmony, such as stronger social safety nets for lower-income citizens and greater consultation and public debate on policies.
How can Singapore take further steps to protect the vulnerable? Share your thoughts with us!
Source: “Singapore 'has moved to protect the vulnerable'”, (The Straits Times, 12 December 2015)