Tighter circuit breaker measures were announced on 21 April, and these included the closure of hairdressing and barber services, as well as selected stand alone F&B outlets.

While there’s been a significant decrease in community transmissions over the past month, Singapore is not out of the woods as there are still unlinked cases in the community.

New clusters may form if we let our guard down.

The bottom line is, this is not the time to slacken and let our guard down. We may be easing some measures but we must stay very disciplined and vigilant.
Minister Lawrence Wong

Restrictions will be cautiously lifted over the coming weeks.

 

From 5 May:

  • Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) needle acupuncture will be allowed, for pain management only, if assessed by the TCM practitioner to be essential.

  • TCM halls with registered TCM practitioners will also be allowed to sell retail products, on top of the consultation and herbal dispensary services that can currently provide.

  • Residents living in strata-titled residential buildings like condominiums may exercise within common areas of the developments. Enforcement officers, Management Corporations (MCST) and Managing Agents must do their part to ensure safe distancing measures are followed. Sports and recreational facilities (eg. Playgrounds, pools, gyms) remain closed.

From 12 May, the following can resume operations:

  • Manufacturing and onsite preparation of all food, including cakes and confectionery, ice cream, cocoa, chocolate and chocolate products, and other snacks

  • Retail outlets of food, including cakes and confectionery, packaged snacks and desserts, may be open for takeaway and delivery only

  • Home-based food businesses, but only for delivery or collection (in a safe and contactless manner, by appointment). Home-based private dining not allowed.

  • Retail laundry services

  • Barbers and hairdressers for basic haircut services

  • Retail of pet supplies

The list of activities that will be allowed to operate, and relevant further information, will be updated at https://covid.gobusiness.gov.sg/essentialservices

From 19 May:

Students from graduating cohorts will be brought back to school in small groups for face-to-face consultations and lessons.

Priority will be given to students requiring school facilities for coursework and practical sessions, and those who need additional support and remediation during the school vacation period.

Institutes of Higher Learning (especially the Institute of Technical Education) will bring back small groups of students on campus for critical consultations, projects or practicums.

Students’ return will be staggered, and safe distancing and safe management measures will be in place.

We have to do this cautiously and gradually. And as we do this, we need everyone to cooperate, so that we can open up the economy and resume normal activities safely without causing further clusters to form.
Minister Lawrence Wong

Further safeguards

Even as the measures are progressively eased, further safeguards may be put in place.

  1. Stringent requirements on all employers and firms

    This includes working from home wherever possible, enforcing safe distancing at the workplace, stagger work hours and breaktimes, and ensuring no cross-deployment of staff across teams and worksites. Employees should wear a mask at work and avoid gatherings at staff canteens or going out in groups during lunch breaks.

  2. Restrictions of daily movements of workers in and out of all dormitories

    The number of cases at migrant worker dormitories is still high. Restrictions will be extended till 1 June.

  3. Using technology to speed up contact tracing
  • SafeEntry (to log names NRIC/FINs and mobile numbers of visitors) will be deployed extensively across Singapore, including at workplaces, malls and supermarkets. From 12 May 2020, all businesses and services in operation must use the SafeEntry system to log the check-in and check-out of employees and visitors.

  • Download the TraceTogether app which uses Bluetooth proximity data to establish contact between two users. Details here.

Be socially responsible:

  • Continue to stay at home as much as possible;
  • Practise safe distancing;
  • Keep up with personal hygiene and wearing of masks.

The health of all depends on each one of us.