Singapore

Testing to be offered to stallholders, assistants, delivery riders

Screening centres will be set up near hawker centres and markets

Covid-19 testing will be offered to more than 45,000 stallholders and their assistants, cleaners and food delivery personnel from now till the end of the year, as part of efforts to contain cryptic cases in the community.

The one-off test will be conducted for individuals working at 110 hawker centres and markets and more than 1,120 coffee shops, as well as food delivery riders working in those places.

Testing is voluntary, but the workers are strongly encouraged to get tested, to protect themselves and their loved ones, said the National Environment Agency (NEA), Singapore Food Agency (SFA), and Enterprise Singapore (ESG) yesterday.

Starting yesterday, more than 2,200 stallholders, stall assistants and cleaners working at 11 hawker centres and markets, and 82 coffee shops in Ang Mo Kio GRC, Kebun Baru and Yio Chu Kang, as well as food delivery riders, were slated to be tested.

The tests will be conducted till today at screening centres set up near the hawker centres and markets.

Today, five screening centres - running from 10am to 4pm - will be set up in the Ang Mo Kio area, including Ang Mo Kio Central Stage and Block 214 Ang Mo Kio Avenue 3.

Officers from NEA and SFA, and grassroots leaders, as well as hawkers' and merchants' associations, have started to reach out to the target groups in those areas since last Saturday.

ESG has also informed food delivery companies about the testing exercise.

This wider roll-out of testing follows a pilot swab-testing initiative conducted at some hawker centres, markets and coffee shops in Marine Parade last month.

PLAN

Beyond Ang Mo Kio town, NEA is talking to town councils, and hawkers' and merchants' associations in other parts of Singapore to identify suitable sites, dates and times for testing.

The plan is to cover the remaining hawker centres, markets and coffee shops before the end of the year.

Information on the test schedules and locations of upcoming screening centres will be provided when ready.

Health Minister Gan Kim Yong said last month the Government will consider expanding the testing scheme to other groups, including university students in hostels.

coronavirus