PITIFUL COMCARE ASSISTANCE, HOW TRUE IS "WITH YOU FOR YOU FOR S'PORE"?

With You For You For Singapore

I received in the mail today – an 86 page booklet “With You For You For Singapore“.

On page 9, it states that “We expanded social safety nets

We shared the fruits of our economic growth, redistributed surpluses and used income from investing our reserves to help Singaporeans. We :

• expanded outreach through Social Service Offices

• provided Public Assistance, ComCare, and GST Vouchers to Singaporeans in need”

ComCare

Applications & success rate statistics disappeared? 

In this connection, the ComCare annual report’s statistics did not give the number of applications for financial assistance and the success rate like in the past – which apparently has disappeared from this year’s report.

How many needy families actually received financial assistance?

15,699 households received ComCare financial assistance

According to Social Statistics 2014  - the number of families that received ComCare Short-to-Medium Term Assistance was 12,535 in 2013.

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The number that received ComCare long-term assistance was 3,164 (I understand that this figure has remained at around 3,000 for more than a decade!).

So, the total number on Short-to-Medium Term and Long-term Assistance was 15,699 (12,535 + 3,164).

But 107,490 households per capita income $494

Even if we do not talk about the bottom second and third deciles of employed households or the 3.4 per cent of non-retiree households with no working persons and 7 per cent of retiree households which may fall below the ComCare criteria of $650 household per capita income – the bottom decile alone had about 107,490 employed households with per capita monthly income of only $494 (including employer CPF).

Only 15% of bottom decile received ComCare financial assistance?

So, does it mean that only about 15 per cent (15,699 ComCare financial assistance divided by 107,490 bottom decile households) actually received ComCare financial assistance?

Only 4% of those in poverty received ComCare financial assistance?

If we relate this to the 360,000 (30 per cent) households) estimated to be in poverty – does it mean that only about 4 per cent (15,699 divided by 360,000) received ComCare financial assistance?

Short-term financial assistance less than $200?

According to the ComCare Annual Report FY2013 – $31.36 million was disbursed to 17,182 households on short-term assistance in FY2013 – with only 6,867 households remaining (still on) assistance as at 31 March 2014.

So, does it mean that the average monthly financial assistance per household was less than $200 ($31.36 million divided by 17,182 = $152)?

Medium-term financial assistance less than $250?

Similarly, $24.34 million was disbursed to 8,774 households on medium-term assistance – with only 5,520 households remaining as at 31 March  2014.

So, does it mean that the average monthly medium-term financial assistance was less than $250 ($24.34 million divided by 8,774 = $231)?

Please tell us more

Why can’t the ComCare annual report just disclose the average amount of monthly financial assistance per household?

Looking at the above statistics – do you agree with “With You For You For Singapore”?


Leong Sze Hian

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