FDAWU Honours 2,000 Hospitality Workers and 47 Companies for their COVID-19 Efforts in 2020

FDAWU played a critical role in the redeployment of workers during the pandemic and pledges to continue working with companies to protect jobs.
By Ian Tan Hanhonn 12 Aug 2021

The Food, Drinks and Allied Workers Union (FDAWU) hosted an online appreciation ceremony to honour some 2,000 hospitality workers and 47 organisations for their role in providing essential services during the pandemic last year.

Some 200 attendees were present during the event on 12 August 2021. Member of Parliament for Holland Bukit-Timah GRC Christopher de Souza, who is also an advisor to FDAWU, was the guest of honour at the event.

At the height of pandemic, hospitality workers were redistributed to essential roles such as safe distancing ambassadors, contact tracers, temperature screeners, warehouse pickers/packers and supermarket retail assistants.

The union said that it recognises the efforts of the workers who went out of their comfort zone to take on the essential roles.

During his opening address, FDAWU General Secretary Tan Hock Soon said: “COVID-19 has profoundly affected many sectors in Singapore, especially the hospitality sector. The pandemic may have lasted longer than we had expected but we have also learnt an important lesson to embrace changes and be flexible so that everyone can overcome the challenges together, in our very own Singapore spirit.

“We are grateful for the workers’ sacrifices and the management’s commitment to protect the livelihoods of every worker.”

Managing Excess Manpower

Since the start of the circuit breaker in April 2020, FDAWU has been helping hotels and food retailers manage excess manpower and stay afloat through cost savings, which then allowed workers to remain employed.

Through its own efforts and that of the NTUC’s Job Security Council (JSC), FDAWU worked to match workers to temporary roles during the down time, helping some 47 companies with excess manpower deploy their workers to 14 receiving companies and public sector agencies without changes to their original employment.

To date, the JSC has matched more than 32,000 workers to new jobs since February 2020.