The government will be giving more cash to all families to help them cope if their livelihoods are affected during this uncertain period of the fight against Covid-19, Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat said.
Speaking in parliament on Thursday, March 26, the finance minister announced that he will enhance the Care and Support Package previously announced in Budget 2020.
With the enhancements estimated to cost about S$3 billion, up from S$1.6 billion, the Care and Support Package measures will now cost the government a total of about S$4.6 billion.
Here are the details:
1. One-off cash payout to be tripled
The one-off Care and Support — cash payout, announced at Budget 2020, will be tripled for all Singaporeans aged 21 and above in 2020, Heng said.
This means each eligible citizen will receive S$900, S$600 or S$300, depending on their income.
Those who own more than one property will receive S$300 regardless of their income.
2. Eligible parents to receive extra S$300 each
Families with young children will benefit too.
Parents with at least one Singaporean child aged 20 and below in 2020, will each receive an additional S$300 in cash.
3. S$100 PAssion Card top-up to be given in cash instead
The S$100 PAssion Card top-up for Singaporeans aged 50 and above as part of Budget 2020 will be given in cash instead, Heng said.
The change was in view of the need for safe distancing during the Covid-19 period.
Eligible Singaporeans need not redeem the cash in person, as the S$100 will be deposited directly into their designated bank account, together with their Care and Support — Cash payout.
The details of the Enhanced Care and Support schemes are laid out in the table here:
4. Additional S$200 of Grocery Vouchers
To further help needy Singaporeans with their daily expenses, Heng will be tripling the grocery vouchers given to them in 2020, from S$100 to S$300.
This means Singaporeans aged 21 and above who live in 1-room and 2-room HDB flats will receive an additional S$200 of grocery vouchers in 2020.
In total, they will receive S$400 in grocery vouchers — S$300 in 2020, and S$100 in 2021.
These grocery vouchers can be used at NTUC FairPrice, Giant and Sheng Siong.
Young family could receive around S$2,900, 3-gen family can get up to S$6,700
Heng said these enhancements will allow a young family to receive around S$2,900, instead of S$1,300, under the Care and Support Package.
A 3-generation family will receive about S$6,700, instead of S$1,800, he added.
Additional grant to SHGs and CDCs
In addition, the government will be giving an additional grant of S$10 million over two years to Self-Help Groups (SHGs), and an additional grant of S$55 million to Community Development Councils (CDCs) in FY2020.
This will help scale up local assistance schemes to support vulnerable households.
Together with the support announced at Budget 2020, the total grant to SHGs is S$20 million over FY2020 and FY2021, while the total grant to CDCs is S$75 million in FY2020.
Top image by Roslan Rahman/AFP via Getty Images