The Ministry of Transport and the Land Transport Authority (LTA) has set up a Transition Assistance Package to help delivery riders switch from e-scooters to bicycles, power assisted bicycles (PAB), and personal mobility aids (PMA).
This comes after many food delivery riders complained about the sudden footpath ban introduced on Monday (Nov. 4) and which took effect on Tuesday (Nov. 5), which they have said will negatively impact their livelihood.
During a media briefing on Friday (Nov. 8), Senior Minister of State for Transport Lam Pin Min said that the government "deliberated long and hard before [it] came up with this decision", stressing that they were "aware of the implications and extent of people who would be affected" by the footpath ban.
The decision was made, however, Lam said, because of the finding that according to statistics on PMD-related accidents between January and September this year, 64 per cent of the 184 off-road accidents involving PMDs took place on footpaths.
That being said, Lam stressed that the government is "very determined" to assist the affected delivery riders.
"We actually wasted no time in working with the various government agencies as well as food delivery companies. We understand that there will be potential hardship imposed on food delivery riders in this announcement, and are very determined to help as many of them stay on their jobs as possible."
Grant of between S$600 to S$1,000 to switch to LTA-approved devices
The government has worked with the three major food delivery companies (GrabFood, Deliveroo, and FoodPanda) to set up a S$7 million e-scooter Trade-in Grant.
This grant provides financial assistance to existing food delivery riders who want to trade in their PMDs for bicycles, PABs and PMAs.
Under this scheme, the food delivery companies will provide funding support for their riders to switch to alternative LTA-approved devices. LTA will match dollar-for-dollar the funding that these food delivery companies provide.
Riders will receive up to S$600 to switch to bicycles, and up to S$1,000 to switch to PABs and PMAs.
The food delivery companies are working with retailers to purchase road-approved devices in bulk, hence bringing down their cost.
For example, Grab said in a media statement that it is partnering five retailers to help their delivery-partners explore viable transport alternatives at preferred rental or purchase rates.
What must you do to get the trade-in disbursement?
- You must be an existing e-scooter-using delivery rider as of Nov. 7, 2019.
- You need to surrender your e-scooter at disposal points located at Grab, Deliveroo, and FoodPanda, depending on which company you work for.
- Delivery riders who work for more than one company are only eligible for one disbursement.
- The trade in scheme starts from Friday (Nov. 15, 2019) and runs until Dec. 31.
What if you don't want to be a delivery rider anymore?
If you are considering other job options, NTUC's Employment and Employability Institute (e2i) and Workforce Singapore are working with the three food delivery companies to provide career services and job search support.
Affected riders will be receiving customised information on career events from next week.
What if I need financial assistance right now?
"For those who are affected and need interim assistance, we have also mobilised our social service offices as well as to inform our local advisers to provide assistance as and when necessary," said Lam.
There are temporary financial assistance schemes available right now from the Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF) and ComCare.
Affected riders can also approach the nearest Social Service Office or People's Association Community Club for assistance.
Top image by Zheng Zhangxin.
Content that keeps Mothership.sg going
This event teaches you how to be your own farmer in the comfort of your own home.
Jio all your friends to see the northern lights in this city in Norway!
A hipster's dream Europe itinerary that excludes the big major cities.
Did you know these are the most happening places in Singapore?