Tightly packed dormitories have become the new challenge of Singapore in its fight against the virus pandemic.
These dormitories housing thousands of foreign workers have emerged as the hotspots as its potential to spread the disease beyond control. The city state reported its highest daily increase of infections Thursday, and more than 200 of the 287 new cases were linked to foreign worker dormitories that house mainly low-wage workers in construction and other sectors. Those groups now account for about a quarter of the country’s 1,910 cases.
Authorities have moved swiftly to isolate the clusters. Two dormitories that together house almost 20,000 people were on Sunday designated by the Ministry of Manpower as “isolation areas” after new, inked virus cases emerged, while two more dormitories were gazetted this week. Residents were ordered to stay in their shared rooms for two weeks, but would still receive wages as well as deliveries of food and other essentials.