Hostels for workers must be improved


IN the past few days, the number of Covid-19 cases has been breaking new records despite the best efforts of the authorities, in particular the Health Ministry, to flatten the rate of transmission. Standard operating procedures are in place and the public in general have been following them.

Recently, foreign workers have been making up most of the cases detected. However, we must not think they are the main cause in the spike of Covid-19 cases. We must compare their situation with ours instead.

For us, when we are in the workplace, we observe the SOP. When we are at home, we mix with our family members and sleep in our own room. As far as we are concerned, there is no SOP to observe at home.

For foreign workers, they observe the SOP at their workplaces. After work, they go back to their hostels. The people in the hostels are not their family members and might even be from other areas or work in different companies.

Moving about in a hostel is similar to moving around in a public place. SOPs must be strictly followed. It would be good if representatives from their company are present to ensure the SOPs are followed. In addition, the number of persons to a room must be restricted to prevent crowding.

The authorities should also look into the ventilation in the rooms. SOP and room ventilation are simple but crucial factors in controlling the spread of Covid-19. Perhaps the relevant authorities could get their officers to monitor the hostels of foreign workers.

WONG SOO KAN , Petaling Jaya

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