No e-mails after leaving the office and no homework for children two days of the week.
These were some ideas to improve the lives of Singaporeans, from MP for Mountbatten Lim Biow Chuan in Parliament yesterday.
On the fifth and final day of the debate on the President's Address, during which a total of 62 MPs spoke, Mr Lim said such steps will help to reduce stress and improve family bonding.
Mr Lim, also the chairman of the Government Parliamentary Committee for Education, called for the Ministry of Education to consider reducing the curriculum by 20 to 30 per cent.
He noted that students, like working adults, are stressed out because of their workload.
He said: "Parents fear that even as they set time for their children, it is their children who don't have time for them any more... I am concerned that in our desire to develop our children holistically, we may inadvertently take away their childhood."
As for work stress, he said the civil service can take the lead by discouraging their staff from replying to e-mails after office hours unless it is urgent.
On Thursday, MP for Punggol East Lee Li Lian had said that only a minority of companies have work-life balance initiatives because it had been tackled exclusively in the domain of manpower policy.
In clarification, Mr Hawazi Daipi, Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Education and Manpower, said yesterday that the Tripartite Committee on Work-Life Strategy will issue an advisory to set out guidelines on implementing flexible work arrangements by November.
This article was first published on May 31, 2014.
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