Public Hygiene Council

Keep Singapore Clean


Make stricter standards of hygiene the new norm

Mar 31, 2020

I refer to the recent Forum letters: (One simple act to change society, by Mr Alan Low Yu Hao, March 14; Duty of everyone to speak up against bad hygiene habits, by Ms Pauline Chung Pui Lan, March 17; Are kids raised to think of chores as beneath them, by Mr Anthony Lee Mui Yu, March 20; and Being better prepared for future outbreaks, by Mr Thomas Richard Prakasam, March 21).

I agree with the points made by the various writers. In fact, the Public Hygiene Council (PHC) has been reiterating these very concerns over the past years.

The PHC has also been engaging schools, operators of public eating places and the general public to promote good hygiene habits.

For instance, since 2016, we have worked with the Ministry of Education to promote the Keep Singapore Clean Movement in schools. Students not only clean their own classrooms every day but many also take time to help clean their school compounds and areas in the neighbouring community.

We have also initiated conversations with parents of pre-school children on their role in cultivating good hygiene habits in their young children.

Since the outbreak of Covid-19, the PHC has been playing a major role in SG Clean, the national campaign to rally the public and businesses to raise cleanliness and hygiene standards.

One of our initiatives is to feature owners of coffee shops and commercial buildings who practise very high standards of cleanliness and have stepped up their efforts to counter the Covid-19 contagion.

It is even more critical during these times that everyone plays his part.

As Mr Charlie H. T. Lau rightly said, if all of us practise good personal hygiene and take precautions, we can beat this virus (S'pore can't delay GE forever even amid virus outbreak, March 20).

But let us not return to our old ways once the crisis is over. Let us continue to wash our hands regularly, clear our tables at public eating places, throw our trash into the bins, and keep public toilets dry and clean.

Make these acts of courtesy and consideration the new norm. We will all be better for it.

Edward D'Silva
Public Hygiene Council

Source: The Straits Times