My letter to The New Paper on the above matter is published today – Wednesday 4th December 2013, page 13.
Like many others, I was heartbroken when I read “Sea of sorrow” (The New Paper, Nov 27).
The mother of the 17-month-old has been arrested and faces a murder charge. Her father said she lost her job recently. Now, one life has been lost and another hangs in the balance.
Workers who have lost their jobs and those anxious over being laid off need help to cope as financial woes can push them into a dark corner.
Losing a job can push a person into denial, frustration and hopelessness.
During such periods, anxiety will cause the stress levels to shoot up, sometimes with tragic consequences.
There are agencies that can assist families trying to cope with such stress, but the authorities should do more to increase public awareness of the help that is available.
I would like to suggest the following measures to support laid-off workers.
When workers lose their jobs, employers must be required to notify the Ministry of Manpower (MOM). The information can then be passed on to the relevant family services centres and others to provide support measures.
The Member of Parliament concerned should also be kept informed so that financial assistance can be stepped up and home visits carried out.
This is important because some of the newly unemployed will be so despondent that they may not want to seek help.
Brochures with information on helplines and family service centres should also be more readily available for this group.
RAYMOND ANTHONY FERNANDO