Massive Surge In Singapore Casino Self Exclusion Orders

According to a report released by the the National Council on Problem Gambling (NCPG), there has been a massive surge in the number of foreigners applying for self exclusion orders at Singapore casinos.
Last year, there were just 50 applications made by foreigners throughout the whole of 2010 but now that figure has risen dramatically to 12,660 people.
Singapore has more than one million foreigners working in the country and various factors are seen as key to explaining the sharp rise in self exclusion orders.
Firstly, since November the self-exclusion application process has been simplified from the manual system previously in place, with the NCPG writing to foreign worker employers and informing them on how to now apply online.
Secondly, many Singaporer companies are refusing to renew their foreign employees work permits unless they agree to give the casinos a wide berth. For instance, Eng Lee Engineerings employs 400 foreign workers and as spokesperson Brenda Koh explains:
“Whether they win or lose at the casino, gambling affects their motivation and concentration at work.”
HEC Electrical and Construction reechoed the sentiment with the company’s finance and human resource manager Eliza Fong commenting:
“Their pay is not high, so we don’t want them to waste their hard-earned money.”
However, other companies such as Lucky Joint Construction have taken a more hands-off approach to their foreign employees’ after work activities, although attendance figures are watched carefully as a forewarning of any potential problems. As managing director Yeow Kian Seng explains:
“I find that it’s not necessary for our staff because their attendance is quite regular, except that we monitor those who go for more medical leave.”
In total, around 18,000 self exclusion orders are now in place at Singapore’s casinos, of which 70% are from foreigners. In addition to the 12,660 foreign workers excluded from the casinos, the number of  locals excluding themselves from visiting Singapore’s casinos has also risen from 3,500 to 5,389.

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