Mr Gerald Giam Yean Song (Aljunied): Thank you, Madam. I have some questions on the adult disability care. Is the staff-client ratio of adult disability care facilities lower than that of the teacher-student ratio at SPED schools? And if so, why is there this disparity between the two? Because this is what causes the cliff effect for those who are graduating from SPED schools. And lastly, does MSF have any plans to close this gap, given that most SPED school graduates will need to attend post-18 disability care facilities?
Mr Eric Chua: I thank the Member for his clarification. On the first question of whether the staff ratio for the adult disability care facilities are on par with the SPED schools. I do not have the numbers for the staff ratios for SPED schools on hand at the moment so I cannot give a fair comparison across these two types of facilities.
On the second point about closing the gaps, I do think that what we are doing is journeying with our persons with disabilities and, as I mentioned earlier, what we have done is to over time, where necessary, increase funding. For instance, I mentioned increased funding for our day activity centres by some 20% or $3 million last year and we have also increased funding for our adult disability homes, by about 25%, most recently as well.
Our intention is really to make sure that we cater for the right amount as well as the right type of services that our persons with disabilities need within the community. I think in terms of closing the gap, that is definitely what we hope to do. That is why in the iterations of the three Enabling Masterplan since 2007, we have been keeping at it. We have been working on the fourth edition, as Members know now. The results and the findings of which will be made known in the later part of this year. I hope that Members can look out for the announcements that we make under EMP2030.
10 March 2022
Ministry of Social and Family Development