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KF Seetoh says many coffee shops still at ‘Phase 1’ because of high cost to employ someone to check vaccination status

The Independent logo The Independent 20/1/2022 Obbana Rajah
© The Independent Singapore

Singapore — Questioning why entry officers were only funded at public hawker centres and not at coffee shops, KF Seetoh voiced out his concerns on social media.

In a Facebook post on Jan 19, Mr Seetoh, founder of Makansutra and advocate for all things hawker, pointed out that many coffee shops were not able to afford entry officers to check the vaccination status of patrons, and were thus still limiting themselves to groups of 2 diners.

“As if good governance is meant only for customers of public service amenities, like HDB, MRT, bus rides, hawker cte etc. Coffeeshop hawkers are also citizens that need help mah”, Mr Seetoh wrote.

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According to the Straits Times, only about 5 per cent of 2,200 coffee shops and canteens have chosen to employ officers to check the vaccination status of diners.

Mr Seetoh also asked if coffee shop associations had helped with subsidies in any way. “It’s ridiculous to think coffeeshop hawkers are ok with 2 pax rules (it’s still phase 1 for them innit?).. with no end in sight”, he wrote.

Because coffee shops did not have officers to check the vaccination status, he explained that it meant the unvaccinated could go to a private hawker centre and sit next to anyone, causing a potential Covid-19 cluster. There are up to three times as many private hawker centres than public ones, he noted.

“Don’t punish private enterprise citizens please. They support the govt too. It’s not them vs the rest. It’s one nation one people”, Mr Seetoh said.

From Nov 22 last year, vaccinated groups of up to five could dine at restaurants without the need to be from the same household. The same rule also applied to hawker centres and coffee shops that were able to put in place the necessary checks. /TISG

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