NTUC champions the interest of older workers

By March 31, 2023Current
NTUC champions the interest of older workers

TL;DR – With an ageing population, statistically, from 2020, one in four workers is aged 55 and above.  

NTUC Assistant Secretary-General Patrick Tay highlighted that older professionals, managers and executives (PMEs), especially those in their 40s to 60s, are facing difficulty finding jobs. They are concerned that their age is attributed to their job security.  

NTUC’s Dialogue on Dignified Ageing  

“Every age has its place in society,” said NTUC Deputy Secretary-General Heng Chee How at the #EveryWorkerMatters Conversations held at the NTUC Clubhouse @ SingPost on 25 March 2023.  

He added, “Every age should have a place at work if they can and want to. It may be different kinds of work, but there should be a place to contribute.”  

During the discussion, Mr Heng engaged with mature workers aged 40 and above from various industries to hear about their concerns and explore solutions.  

At the event, Mr Heng reiterated the efforts by NTUC and tripartite partners that benefitted older workers and how NTUC will continue to champion their needs.  

Key recommendations from the Tripartite Workgroup for older workers  

1. Raising the retirement and re-employment age 

Some workers are let go by their employers once they have reached retirement age. Increasing this limit would allow older workers who wish to continue working to do so.  

Today, the retirement age is 63 and by 2030, the retirement age will be raised to 65.  

And the re-employment age today is 68. By 2030, it will be raised to 70.  

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2. Raising CPF contribution rates  

Retirement adequacy may still be a concern for some older low-wage workers. In a survey conducted by NTUC, 71% of the respondents earning below $2,500 cited that they need to continue working due to financial reasons.  

To supplement this, the increase in percentage contribution to the CPF Special Account will be increased. This will enable workers to maximize their interest earned.  

Age Bands 

Today  1 Jan 2021 

Long-term Target  

55 and below 

37% (No change) 

55 to 60  26%  28%  37% 
60 to 65  16.5%  18.5%  26% 
65 to 70  12.5%  14%  16.5% 

70 and above 

12.5% (No change) 

 3. Create inclusive and progressive workplaces 

From the same survey, 66% of respondents are concerned about involuntary job loss. To address this concern, NTUC has been continuously working with employers to shift their mindset towards retaining mature workers and supported management partners to adopt job redesign and implement age-friendly workplaces.  

Here are some initiatives that employers can consider implementing: 

  • Have structured career planning sessions with older workers on career development and re-employment 
  • Redesign jobs to raise productivity and workplace longevity 
  • Provide more part-time re-employment opportunities 
  • Restructure employer-provided medical benefits from group hospital & surgical insurance schemes to additional MediSave contributions or other flexible benefits 
  • Tap on various grants under WorkPro to create age-friendly workplaces.  

At the discussion, Mr Heng emphasised that the focus was not on charity but dignity, stating that if workers have substance, there is no reason not to consider them for any position. 

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If you are an older worker with concerns, share your thoughts at conversations.ntuc.sg 

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Author Wesley

A Singaporean talking about anything related to Singapore and Singaporeans. Current affairs junkie!

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