Corrective Work Order



The Corrective Work Order (CWO), which came into effect on 1 November 1992, is an amendment to the anti-littering law. It was a punitive measure that requires the offender to clean up the community instead of paying a fine. The first CWOs were performed on 21 February 1993 at public places such as parks and beaches. On 18 July 1993, the CWO was conducted at public housing estates for the first time to bring the lesson closer to home.

Description
Singapore has long been known as a clean and green city.1 Environmental cleanliness is one of the nation’s top priorities, after defence and economic development. Anti-littering regulations with fines as penalties and the Keep Singapore Clean campaigns have helped reduce land pollution. However, littering has never been totally eradicated.2


In 1992, an amendment to the anti-littering law was made such that offenders could be tasked to clean up public places instead of having to pay fines.3 The Environment Public Health (Amendment) Act took effect on 1 November 1992,4 and applies to those above 16 years old who are repeat offenders and/or have committed serious littering offences.5 Offenders are issued CWO notices to clean up public places under the supervision of health inspectors. They have to report to their respective CWO officers at the designated location and clean up the area for up to three hours.6 Similar regulations, under which a convicted person undergoes community service for a stipulated amount of time, have also been implemented in other countries such as the United States and the United Kingdom.7

The first CWOs in Singapore were performed on 21 February 1993.8 The convicted litterbugs were ordered to clean up public places such as parks and beaches, including East Coast Park, Changi Beach Park and Marina Promenade Park.9

In response to a suggestion by the Tanjong Pagar Town Council’s management, CWOs were carried out in public housing estates for the first time on 18 July 1993. Going to a park or beach is not a daily occurrence for many. Cleaning up housing estates is thus a way to increase offenders’ awareness of the impact of their littering, as well as the difficulties and troubles faced by hired cleaners.10 On that Sunday morning, a group of 10 offenders performed their hour-long CWO sentence in the Redhill/Tiong Bahru housing estate, which was under the purview of the Tanjong Pagar Town Council.11 Most of the offenders were non-residents of Tiong Bahru who were convicted for leaving drink cans or newspapers lying in public areas.12



Author
Nureza Ahmad



References
1. Cheam, J. (2012, April 5). How green is this little red dot? The Straits Times, p. 2. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
2. Nathan, D. (1995, July 9). New approach to keep S’pore litter-freeThe Straits Times, p. 3. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
3. Nathan, D. (1995, July 9). New approach to keep S’pore litter-freeThe Straits Times, p. 3. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
4. Public clean-ups have deterred litterbugs. (1994, February 13). The Straits Times, p. 14; Two new laws from tomorrow. (1992, October 31). The Business Times, p. 2. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
5. Target: Die-hard litterbugs. (1992, September 18). The Straits Times, p. 33; Tan, C. (1993, February 22). The shame of it all. The Straits Times, p. 24; Goh, S. (1992, September 15). Litterbugs to clean up public places, but only in serious cases. The Straits Times, p. 1. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
6. Target: Die-hard litterbugs. (1992, September 18). The Straits Times, p. 33. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
7. Public clean-ups have deterred litterbugs. (1994, February 13). The Straits Times, p. 14. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
8. Tan, C. (1993, February 22). The shame of it all. The Straits Times, p. 24. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
9. Public clean-ups have deterred litterbugs. (1994, February 13). The Straits Times, p. 14; Less littering since CWOs started. (1993, July 19). The Straits Times, p. 20. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
10. Yeo, H. Y. (1993, July 19). Litterbugs made to clean up housing estate for first time. The Straits Times, p. 20. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
11. Less littering since CWOs started. (1993, July 19). The Straits Times, p. 20; Yeo, H. Y. (1993, July 19). Litterbugs made to clean up housing estate for first time. The Straits Times, p. 20. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
12. Yeo, H. Y. (1993, July 19). Litterbugs made to clean up housing estate for first time. The Straits Times, p. 20. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.



The information in this article is valid as at 2012 and correct as far as we are able to ascertain from our sources. It is not intended to be an exhaustive or complete history of the subject. Please contact the Library for further reading materials on the topic.

 

Subject
Litter (Trash)--Law and legislation--Singapore
Law and government>>Environmental protection>>Environmental policy
Politics and Government>>Law
Environmental Law--Singapore
Environmental Policy--Singapore
Law