Set up review panel to identify, tackle social challenges: ESM Goh

Set up review panel to identify, tackle social challenges: ESM Goh

Emeritus Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong has suggested setting up a social review committee that can help identify and tackle social challenges facing Singapore.

In an interview published in this month's issue of Petir, the People's Action Party's magazine, he said such a committee could help ensure a coherent framework to pull all the different parts together, and ensure a holistic and sustainable effort to keep the country fair and equitable for all.

That, in turn, will help to ensure Singaporeans can "see the overall picture, and not just the parts". Mr Goh said social challenges - such as ensuring social mobility and dealing with a rapidly ageing population - will weigh more significantly on the Government in the years to come.

While the Government had focused on economic policies in the past, he added, it has since turned its attention to social policies in a bid to help Singaporeans level up.

Measures such as MediShield Life, the Progressive Wage Model and enhancing pre-school education are illustrative of this shift.

A committee focused on reviewing social policies can study long- term trends and recommend ways to restructure the way social services are delivered, he said.

It will not be unlike the economic review committees of the past, he added, that were set up to transform Singapore's economy at "critical junctures" of the country's development.

Mr Goh added that the committee should involve not just the Government but also key stakeholders and experts outside of Government and the PAP.


This article was published on April 8 in The Straits Times.

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