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Initial report submitted on 12 January 1999 (CEDAW/C/SGP/1)


Population, July 2000 estimate: 4,151,264

Ethnic Groups:  77% Chinese, 14% Malay, 7.6% Indian, 1.4% other.

Religion: Buddhist (Chinese), Muslim (Malays), Christian, Hindu, Sikh, Taoist, Confucianist

GDP, per capita, purchasing power parity - $27,800 (1999 est.)

GDP real growth rate, 1999 estimate: 5.5%

Unemployment rate, 1999 estimate: 3.2%

Major industries: electronics, financial services, oil drilling equipment, petroleum refining, rubber processing and rubber products, processed food and beverages

Population Growth Rate, 2000 estimate: 3.54%

Fertility Rate, 2000 estimate: 1.16 children born/woman

Maternal Mortality Rate, 2000 estimate: 10 deaths per 100,000 live births*

Infant Mortality Rate: 4 deaths per 1,000 live births

Life expectancy at Birth, 2000: Total - 80.05 years

                                                Male - 77.1 years

                                                Female - 83.23 years

Literacy, 1995 estimate: Total - 91.1%

                                     Female - 86.3%

                                     Male - 95.9%

Education: Years compulsory - none now, six beginning 2003. Attendance - 93%.

Sources: The World Factbook 2000 [1] , *IPPF [2]

Recent Political and Economic History

Singapore has a history of  Japanese and British control, finally becoming self-governing in 1959. In 1963, it joined the newly-formed Malaysia.  After a period of friction between Singapore and the central government in Kuala Lumpur, Singapore separated from Malaysia on August 9, 1965, and became an independent republic. The amended Constitution of 1965 defined Singapore as a republic with a parliamentary system of government. Constitutional changes in 1991 increased the power and authority of the president, who now exercises power over legislative appointments, government budgetary affairs, and internal security matters.

Despite recent economic setbacks, lack of resources and a small domestic market, a strategic geographic location and prudent planning has helped Singapore achieve remarkable prosperity. [3]   Per capita GDP is higher in Singapore than in most European countries. Poverty and unemployment levels are low.  Wealth is spread more evenly than in most other countries. The poorest 5 percent of households have about the same levels of ownership of homes, television sets, refrigerators, telephones, washing machines and video recorders as the national average. [4]

The government has been led by the People’s Action Party (PAP) since 1966.  In 1968, 1972, 1976, and 1980, the PAP won all of the seats in parliament.  Workers' Party Secretary General J.B. Jeyaretnam won a by-election in 1981 to become the first opposition party member of parliament in 15 years.  The PAP won 81 of the 83 elected parliamentary seats in the last general election in 1997. [5]   Because a constitutional amendment guarantees opposition parties at least three seats, the President appointed a member of the Workers’ Party to a “nonconstituency” seat with restricted voting rights. [6]

The apparent popularity of the PAP has often been attributed to the effective and thorough oppression of political opposition.  According to one report, the PAP has maintained its political dominance in part by developing genuine voter support through  honest, effective administration and its strong  record in bringing economic prosperity to the country,  and in part by manipulating the electoral frame-work, intimidating organized political opposition, and circumscribing the bounds of legitimate political discourse and action.

Numerous opposition party members, including J.B. Jeyaretnam, have been charged with defamation and fined into bankruptcy.  Jeyaretnam will lose his seat in parliament if he is unable to raise the funds to pay excessively high fines imposed by the government-friendly judiciary.  The courts consistently award in favor of government plaintiffs in cases against opposition party members and government critics. [7]

The government also ensures its electoral popularity by threatening voters.  For example, the Prime Minister and other government officials warned voters in 1997 that precincts electing opposition candidates would be given lowest priority in government plans to upgrade public housing facilities. [8]  

The government defends its oppressive policies in the name of “Asian values.”  It contends that economic development must have precedence over civil and political rights, such as freedom of speech and the right to vote in free and fair elections. [9]

Freedom of Expression and Human Rights

•     Media expression: The Committee To Protect Journalists (CPJ) has reported several instances of government intimidation against journalists from 1995 to 2001.  The government owns or exercises influence over most of the media in Singapore and most reporters exercise self-censorship to avoid persecution. [10]

•            Religious freedom: All religions are subject to government scrutiny and a few are banned. [11]

•     Rights of Association and right to organize: People wishing to speak to a group of more than five must obtain police permission in the form of an entertainment license.  Opposition party members routinely experience delays when submitting applications to speak publicly. [12]  

•     Right to life: Singapore hangs more people than any other country.  Amnesty International reports that Singapore has averaged 40 hangings a year since 1994. [13] Because executions are not publicized, that number could be even higher. [14] Smuggling cannabis is punishable by death. [15]

•            Invasion of privacy:  The government maintains the right to search, seizure, and surveillance, sometimes (in cases of suspected national security threats) without a warrant. [16]  




According to Article 12 of the Constitution of Singapore, all persons are equal before the law and entitled to the equal protection of the law. [17] The Constitution contains no explicit provision defining discrimination against women. [18]   The Ministry of Community Development and Sports is the government body responsible for women’s issues in Singapore. The Women’s Charter of 1961 was passed to protect women’s rights in Singapore and to define equality between wives and husbands (See discussion re: Article 16). 



Though official laws and policies of Singapore generally assume equality between men and women, traditions and stereotypes that preserve gender inequalities persist.  Government intimidation silences all Singaporeans.  Women suffer disproportionately under an oppressive regime, because they are often unable or unwilling to seek redress and legal measures against the past and present discrimination women face. In an article in the Singapore daily Straits Times, the Ministry of Finance articulated a common perception that contradicts the legal guarantee of equality:

We should be careful not to pursue doctrinaire  symmetry in the roles of two sexes.  Many Western  countries have, through unwise social and welfare  policies, unintentionally but irreversibly undermined  the basic family unit of husband, wife and children.  Their experience warns us of the dangers  of even the most well-intentioned government intervention to alter the natural balance and division of responsibility between the sexes, which has evolved over many generations. [19]

Singapore has reserved to Article 2 of the CEDAW Convention.  In 1997, the government of Sweden officially objected to Singapore’s reservations, stating that they “raise doubts as to the commitment of Singapore to the object and purpose of the Convention.” [20]



Three major laws govern trafficking and prostitution in Singapore: the Women's Charter, the Children and Young Person's Act, and the Penal Code.  These laws make trafficking in women and children punishable by up to five years' imprisonment, a $5,800 (SD10,000) fine, and caning. [21]   There is evidence that Singapore is a destination for trafficking in women for the purpose of prostitution, primarily from Thailand and Malaysia.  According to the US State Department, police reportedly conduct monthly raids in an effort to maintain some control over the situation. [22]

Human Rights Watch (HRW) has named Singapore as a favorite pass-through point for traffickers on their way to other countries, such as Japan.  Though HRW does not specify the level of complicity with which Singapore government officials should be charged, government responsibility for trafficking crimes is clearly implied.  “In some cases, these networks also rely on the cooperation of government officials who prepare false documents and/or turn a blind eye to violations, apparently in return for bribes.” [23]   In some instances, escorts contact agents in transiting countries, such as Singapore, to change passports or to collect or deliver other women. [24]   This is crucial to traffickers, because travelers from Singapore do not need visas to enter Japan.  The HRW report includes narratives of women who entered Japan with false Singapore passports. [25] Over half of the women HRW interviewed said agents used false passports to secure their Japanese visas and entrance into Japan.

The Singapore Government has attempted to deal with negative social consequences of prostitution through hard-line punishment, believing that prohibition is the best deterrent.  According to one World Bank report,

Prohibition may discourage some people but merely drives others “underground,” where it is harder for public health programs to reach them, or it may simply “rearrange” the problem. When Singapore attempted to eradicate prostitution by closing “red-light” districts, brothels appeared in residential areas. [26]

One local NGO offers sex workers counseling services, but it is not empowered to provide protection. [27]   The government refers women to shelters and services that advertise help for women in need, [28] but it is unclear what services (if any) they offer prostitutes and women who have been trafficked. 



Women are underrepresented in government.  Women hold only four of the 83 elected parliamentary seats. Women hold two of the nine N.M.P. (president-appointed)  seats, but their voting and participation in parliamentary matters is restricted. [29]   There are no female ministers, not even in the Ministry of Community Development and Sports, which presides over women’s affairs. [30]   While minority representation is mandated —candidate slates in every multi-seat constituency must have at least one minority representative — there is no legal requirement to ensure women’s participation in government. [31]

In 1997, the Singapore government appointed a delegation to report on progress made since the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (1992).   The delegation neglected to include information on the integration of women into the development process.   The information requested by the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development included the status of Singapore’s compliance with CEDAW, the current percentage of women decision makers and the implementation of policies, mechanisms and strategies designed to promote gender equality. [32]

The delegation also failed to provide information on the government’s effort to strengthen the role of non-governmental  organizations as partners for sustainable  development.  Many women actively participate in NGO activities and the significance awarded their activities is unclear.

There has been a marked hesitance by Singapore officials to support international instruments that encourage institutional transparency. Singapore has not ratified ICCPR, CESCR, CERD and many ILO and other multilateral treaties, such as the Mine Ban Treaty. [33]  The government rarely allows human rights monitors to visit the country and forbids them from visiting prisons. [34]   Amnesty International observers were thoroughly criticized by the government in the Singapore press after their visits in 1997 and 1999 to monitor proceedings against political opposition figures. [35]   The belated initial report to CEDAW, submitted in 1999, is the first and only report Singapore has prepared for a UN treaty body. [36]



Though most laws and official policies prohibit discrimination against women, a few still permit it.  One example involves the policy of nationality transmission.  Children born overseas to female citizens are not granted citizenship automatically, while those of male citizens are. [37]   As of 2 January 2000, Singapore women are permitted to sponsor noncitizen husbands for citizenship. [38]



Though primary and secondary school are not yet compulsory, primary school attendance is nearly 100 percent for both boys and girls.  Six years of school will be compulsory starting in 2002.  School is not free of charge to Singapore children.  It is unclear if the impact is gendered, especially as children progress beyond their early school years.  Though literacy is quite high, women are disproportionately illiterate.  According to the World Bank’s Genderstats, 12 percent of Singapore women and four percent of men are illiterate. [39]   Wage gaps are commonly attributed to women’s lower educational qualifications. [40]

It is much more clear that school costs discriminate against single mothers and other female heads of household.  Women in Singapore, especially women over the age of 30, tend to be less educated than their male counterparts.  Well-educated parents receive government subsidies of up to $5,000 for their first three children.  According to one article, “For the poorer and less educated, subsidies are far less generous.” [41]

In 1999, the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development  requested information about curricular and educational program improvements to integrate “gender-relevant” knowledge, but it has received no response from the government. [42]



Feminized labor and the wage gap

Women are well represented in many professions, but they also perform most of the  unskilled or semi-skilled jobs, and their wages are usually lower than those of male employees. [43] One report considers the wage differentials in Singapore to be greater than most East- and South Asian countries. [44]   Although this gender wage difference has been equalizing over the past decade, the gap still exists. According to the Singapore NGO Association of Women for Action and Research (AWARE), women earned 30 percent less than their male counterparts in 1999.  One of AWARE’s slogans is “They’re now doing to her salary what they did to her feet,” in reference to the Chinese practice of footbinding. [45] In addition, female workers are generally less educated than their male counterparts, and they are regarded as more disciplined and more submissive to authority. [46]   Promotion and appointment methods are based on educational performance factors, such as test performance. [47]   At least one recent analysis found weak correlation between test scores and job performance. [48]   This application of this educational basis for promotions and appointments may be inherently discriminatory against women.

Few women hold leadership positions in the private sector. [49]   The number of women in management positions has not risen proportionately to women’s education levels.  A recent book, The Three Paradoxes: Working Women in Singapore investigates this phenomenon.  It outlines obstacles in the form of social gender stereotypes, intolerant corporate culture and other psychological barriers (such as personality traits, locus of control, motivation, fear of success) that partially explain the discrepancy. [50]

Export Processing Zones (EPZs)

In Singapore, as in many other Asian nations, the employment generated by EPZs is estimated to represent at least 20 percent of total wage employment in manufacturing. [51] Employment in EPZs can be short-term and insecure. EPZs have frequently been criticized for providing sub-standard working conditions and for vigorously discouraging the creation of unions. It is estimated that 70 to 80 percent of the total workforce in EPZs consists of women between the ages of 16 and 25. This is partly a consequence of the types of industries located in EPZs: female employment dominates in footwear, garments and electronics production everywhere. [52]

Domestic laborers -“maids” in Singapore

Foreign workers make up 30 percent of Singapore’s workforce. [53]    Over 100,000 migrant women work as domestic laborers in Singapore. [54]   More Singapore women have been able to seek employment outside the home, because prosperity enables them to hire foreign domestic helpers to take over household chores. [55]   Migrant women who work in Singapore, some of whom are illegal immigrants, face serious restrictions of their human rights.  They are prohibited from marrying local citizens and are not allowed to become pregnant.  They are subjected to pregnancy tests every six months. [56] Migrant women who apply to marry permanent residents of Singapore have their work permits canceled. [57]

Female domestic workers receive low wages and are required to work long hours—often six days a week from early morning to late in the evening.  Their financial dependence is often exacerbated by placement agency fees that take women months to pay. [58] They depend on employers to provide adequate room and board and are often required to sign a contract to stay “on the premises” except on the day off or to perform duties for her employer. [59]   Such isolation policies have made migrant women significantly more vulnerable to abuse.  A 1998 amendment to the Penal Code has intensified punishments for sexual and physical abuse of maids, and the media often publicize maid abuse cases.  It is unclear, however, if anything has been done to change the legal restrictions and contractual requirements that keep maids “invisible”  to the public eye.

The right to organize

Singapore has been identified as one of the countries where significant restrictions, stringent registration requirements, political interference and discrimination make independent worker's organizations and union confederations difficult to form. [60]   Singapore has not ratified the ILO conventions on equal remuneration, labor unions, or non-discrimination. [61]   This poses a particular problem for women who earn lower wages than their male counterparts and are predominant in low-wage sectors of the economy.  The wage gap is reportedly not as dramatic in higher-paying and more prestigious jobs. [62]

Equal benefits

Married women who work as civil service employees are not qualified to receive health benefits for their spouses and dependents.  Married male civil servants, on the other hand, receive health benefits for both spouses and dependents. [63]

Indigenous women

There is some evidence of employment discrimination against indigenous Malays in Singapore. [64]   Malay women face additional barriers to equal employment opportunities and are underrepresented in corporate management positions. [65]   In 1999, Singapore officials mandated an end to job advertisements that specify ethnicity and gender requirements, but still allow restrictive language that refers to “attributes relevant to a job.” [66] These guidelines are vague and prone to abuse.



Singapore’s health system is ranked as the sixth-best in the world by the World Health Organization in 2000.  Women live on average over 80 years and maternal and infant mortality are low. [67]

Family planning

The  Singapore Planned Parenthood Association (SPPA) is the only NGO in Singapore involved in family planning.  It has no service delivery programs, but is active in sex and reproductive health education and resource development. [68]    Myths and misconceptions abound in the area of sexuality education, [69] which affects attitudes toward women and held by women.  One source reports, “Singapore gynecologists routinely report women coming to them complaining of barrenness only to be told they are virgins.” [70]  

Sex education

The SPPA seeks improvement in government-run sex education programs in Singapore’s secondary schools, so that the curriculum includes value-based components, not exclusively biological instruction. [71]   Dana Lam, president of the NGO AWARE, claimed that the government’s sex education program sends sexist messages by prizing virginity in girls but not in boys. The Times of India reported, “While many have applauded the program, Lam objected to a section on the CD-ROM which likened female virgins to magazines sealed in plastic covers. She said the analogy was like ‘denouncing non-virgin girls as secondhand goods.’ [72] Other programs attempt to increase men's commitment in all areas of sexual and reproductive and sexual health care needs. [73]   It is unclear what effect these programs have had and whether the government has supported programs that work to end gender-based discrimination in the area of reproductive health. 

Women - the solution to the baby shortage?

Contraceptive services are readily available to the entire population through services provided by the Ministry of Health and by public and private doctors.  Women are under pressure, though, to reverse the baby shortage that one Member of Parliament called “collective suicide.” [74]    The Government is trying to persuade women to help raise the population to 5.5 million by 2040. [75]   One Government official reportedly encouraged women to be less demanding in choosing partners: “We ask our women to play softer, to play a little dumb if possible.” [76]   This is evidence of a cultural form of discrimination that some have called an “Asian values” smokescreen, privileging continued economic growth over the rights of women. [77]

This effort is also highly class-specific.  Educated women are offered significant incentives to have three or more children. For example, “Graduate women with more than three children can get priority placements in Singapore’s better kindergartens and primary schools.” [78]   Poor and less-educated women do not benefit from these incentives.  In fact, they have been offered financial incentives to undergo sterilization in the past. [79]   One source reports that the government will continue to discourage the uneducated from having children.  Former prime minister Lee Kwan Yew reported that less-educated women were having twice as many children as graduate women. [80]



The Women’s Charter and its Amendments

The Women’s Charter of 1961 provides the legal basis for equality between husband and wife. According to the Ministry for Development and Sports, the Charter:

•     makes polygamy illegal;

•     recognizes the wife’s right to a different domicile from  that of her husband;

•     gives equal rights and duties to both husbands and wives in the management of the home and children; 

•     makes it obligatory for a husband to maintain his wife and children during marriage and after divorce;

•     entitles the divorced man or wife to a share of matrimonial assets;  

•     enables a battered spouse to gain protection from the perpetrator; 

•            provides the punishment for offenses against women and girls. [81]

The Women’s Charter (1996) Amendment Bill was passed in Parliament in August of 1996, assented to by the President on  September 27, 1996 and came into force on May 1, 1997.  It provides for an even more equitable distribution of matrimonial assets.  However, the government has not specified how it enforces the clause giving husbands and wives equal duties in managing home and children.  Women continue to bear more responsibility for housework and child rearing, and in cases where domestic laborers are not afforded, this has become a double burden for working women. 

Muslim marriage laws

Muslim women do not enjoy all of the rights and protections of the Women's Charter.  Muslim marriage law falls under the administration of the Muslim Law Act. Under this act, the Shari'a court allows Muslim men to practice polygamy. [82]   More ethnic Malay and Muslim women are seeking divorce as they become more aware of their rights and the stigma associated with divorce wanes, according to Ismail Ibrahim, executive director of the Association of Muslim Professionals (AMP). [83] In 1999, though, the Agence France-Presse  in Singapore reported “a rise in young Muslim couples under the age of 21 being referred for counseling and marriage guidance, and that nine out of 10 times, the girls were already pregnant when they wed.” [84]

Divorce rights

According to the US State Department, both men and women have the right to unilateral divorce; however, women face significant difficulties in initiating unilateral divorce proceedings, which often prevents them from pursuing proceedings. [85]



Violence against women persists.  The Penal Code and the Women's Charter protect women against domestic violence and sexual or physical harassment.  A 1997 amendment to the Women's Charter Act broadened the definition of violence to include intimidation, continual harassment, or restraint against one's will. [86]   The Penal Code prescribes mandatory caning and a minimum imprisonment of 2 years for conviction on a charge of "outraging modesty" that causes the victim fear of death or injury. [87] The impact of new legislation on domestic violence rates is not clear. Female foreign workers are particularly vulnerable to mistreatment and abuse. It is also unclear whether the government has supported educational and training programs that focus on gender sensitivity. 

Traditional attitudes about women’s roles are problematic.  According to a survey of the  general population “when a wife appeared to violate the roles of ‘good mother’ and ‘loyal wife,’ the number of respondents approving of the use of force rose dramatically.” [88]

 Several organizations provide assistance to abused women. AWARE offers counseling and legal advice.  The Family Protection Unit documents physical and psychological abuse,  and provides counseling and legal services to abused women.  The Council of Women's Organizations runs a crisis center for abused persons. [89]   The extent to which the government supports these and other organizations financially is unknown. 


[1] Central Intelligence Agency, “Singapore,”  The World Factbook 2000, available at <http://www.odci.gov/cia/publications/factbook/geos/sn.html>,  accessed on 6 April 2001.

[2] International Planned Parenthood Federation, “Singapore,” Country Profiles, available at <http://ippfnet.ippf.org/pub/IPPF_Regions/IPPF_CountryProfile.asp?ISOCode=SG> accessed 14 April 2001.

[3] U.S. Department of State, Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs,  Background Notes: Singapore (October 2000), available at <http://www.state.gov/www/background_notes/singapore_0010_bgn.html>, accessed 1 June 2001.

[4] Kishore Mahbubani, “Following Singapore's lead on the road of development,”  Earth Times News Service, available at <http://www.earthtimes.org/jan/developmentfollowingsingaporesjan15_01.htm>, accessed on 1 June 2001.

[5] U.S. Department of State, Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs.

[6]   U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, Singapore: Country Reports on Human Rights Practices-2000. February 2001, available at <http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/hrrpt/2000/eap/index.cfm?docid=770>, accessed on 24 March 2001.

[7] National Solidarity Party Singapore, available at <http://www.nsp-singapore.org/>, accessed 31 May 2001.

[8] U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor.

[9] International Centre for Human Rights and Democratic Development,  “Human Rights: APEC's Missing Agenda,” Rights & Democracy, September 1997, available at  <http://www.ichrdd.ca/111/english/commdoc/publications/apecSummitE.html>, accessed 28 May 2001.

[10] Committee to Protect Journalists, “Singapore,” available at <http://www.cpj.org/attacks00/asia00/Singapore.html>, accessed 4 June 2001.

[11] U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor.

[12] Ibid.

[13] “East Asia Executes Most,” Economist Vol 351 No 8113, cited in the new internationalist, available at <http://www.oneworld.org/ni/index4.html>, accessed 28 May 2001.

[14] Ibid.

[15] U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor.

[16] Ibid.

[17] Ministry of Community Development and Sports, Singapore, Women’s Issues, available at <http://www.mcds.gov.sg/HTML/women/women_fr.html>, accessed on 12 April 2001.

[18] U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor.

[19] Cited in Alfred Choi and Jeffrey L. Edelson, “Social Disapproval of Wife Assaults: A National Survey of Singapore,” Journal of Comparative Family Studies, Vol. XXVII, No. 1 (Spring 1996), 74.

[20] United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, “Status of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women : . 26/08/98. A/53/318. (Sessional/Annual Report of Committee),” available at  <http://www.unhchr.ch/tbs/doc.nsf/23a89bf90e53e6ccc125656300593189/7f720038cb0f9eae802566c5005604cf?OpenDocument#COverdue%20r>, accessed 7 May 2001.

[21] U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor.

[22] Ibid.

[23] “Thai border a haven for illegal immigrant trade,” The Nation (Bangkok, Thailand), September 7, 1994.

[24] Human Rights Watch, Owed Justice: Thai Women Trafficked into Debt Bondage in Japan, Human Rights Watch, 2000, available at <http://www.hrw.org/hrw/hrw/hrw/hrw/hrw/reports/2000/japan/6-sec-6-7-8.htm>, accessed on 4 May 2001.

[25] Ibid.

[26] Martha Ainsworth . “Setting Government Priorities in Preventing HIV/AIDS,”  Finance & Development, March 1998, available at <http://www.worldbank.org/fandd/english/0398/articles/0130398.htm>, accessed 13 May 2001.

[27] U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor.

[28] Ministry of Community Development and Sports.

[29] U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor.

[30] Ibid.

[31] Ibid.

[32] United Nations Department for Policy Coordination and Sustainable Development, “Singapore-Implementation Of Agenda 21: Review Of Progress Made Since The United Nations Conference On Environment And Development, 1992,” Available at<http://www.un.org/esa/earthsummit/singa-cp.htm#ch8>, accessed 26 April 2001.

[33] Human Rights Watch, “Landmine Monitor Report 2000: Toward A Mine-Free World,” available at <http://www.hrw.org/reports/2000/landmines/>, accessed 1 June 2001.

[34] U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor

[35] Ibid.

[36] United Nations Commissioner for Human Rights. Treaty Body Database, available at <http://www.unhchr.ch/tbs/doc.nsf/>, accessed 1 June 2001.

[37] U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor.

[38] Ibid.

[39] World Bank Gender and Development Group (PREM Gender) and the Development Data Group in the Development Economics Vice-Presidency,  Genderstats: A Database of Gender Statistics,  available at <http://genderstats.worldbank.org/SummaryGender.asp?WhichRpt=country&Ctry=SGP,Singapore>, accessed 29 May 2001.

[40]   U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor.

[41] Trudi Harris, “Asian Tigers – The Facts,” new internationalist, issue 263, January 1995, available at <http://www.oneworld.org/ni/issue263/facts.htm>, accessed 15 May 2001.

[42] United Nations Department for Policy Coordination and Sustainable Development.

[43] “MACROSCAN: Women's employment in East Asia ,” The Business Line, August 24 1999, available at Sustainable Development Networking Programme (India) online  <http://members.tripod.com/sdnp_india/resources/labour/news/bl-24-8-women.html>, accessed 2 May 2001.

[44] Ibid.

[45] AWARE, available at http://www.aware.org.sg/, accessed 1 June 2001.

[46] UN Division for Social Policy and Development, “1997 Report on the World Social Situation, Part Two: Core Issues”  The Gateway to Social Policy and Development, 17 December 1999, available at <http://www.un.org/esa/socdev/rwss97c7.htm>, accessed 31 May 2001.

[47] The World Bank, “Recruitment & Promotion,” Administrative & Civil Service Reform,  available at  <http://www1.worldbank.org/publicsector/civilservice/recruitment.htm>, accessed 12 April 2001.

[48] Ibid.

[49]   U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor.

[50] Kathleen Campbell, Audrey Chia and Jean Lee S.K.,  The Three Paradoxes: Working Women in Singapore. AWARE. 1999. Chapters 7 and 8.

[51] United Nations Division for Social Policy and Development.

[52] Ibid.

[53]   U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor.

[54] Ibid.

[55] Carolyn Medel-Anonuevo, “The Feminization Of Migrant Labour In Asia Disturbing Realities And Its Challenges For Action,”  Asia Europe Meeting (ASEM) Watch, available at <http://www.tni.org/asia/watch/asem4.htm>, accessed 27 May 2001.

[56] Chakravarthi Raghavan, “Asian female migrant workers require protection, says

 ILO,” Third World Network Online, available at <http://www.twnside.org.sg/title/ilo1-cn.htm>, accessed 5 June 2001.

[57]   U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor.

[58] Ibid.

[59] Ibid.

[60]   International Centre for Human Rights and Democratic Development

[61]   U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor.

[62] Ibid.

[63] Ibid.

[64] Ibid.

[65] Ibid.

[66] Ibid.

[67] World Health Organization, “World Health Organization Assesses the World's Health Systems,”   World Health Report 2000, available at <http://www.who.int/whr/2000/en/press_release.htm>, accessed 28 April 2001.

[68] Kishore Mahbubani. 

[69] IPPF, “SPPA in Review,” available at <http://www.ippf.org/regions/eseaor/pdc/vol6no12/sppa.htm>, accessed 11 May 2001.

[70] Sue Ann Tellman, “Happy-face facism,”  new internationalist; issue 263, January 1995, available at <http://www.oneworld.org/ni/issue263/happy.htm>, accessed 28 May 2001.

[71]   IPPF, “SPPA in Review.”

[72] “Singapore women's group slams sex education programme,” Times of India Online, available at <http://www.timesofindia.com/221000/22aspc4.htm>, accessed 28 May 2001.

[73] IPPF, “Implementing Cairo: IPPF’s Contribution,” available at <http://www.ippf.org/cairo/impl.htm>, accessed 22 May 2001.

[74] IPPF, “Passionless Singapore ‘Risks Suicide’,”  26 May 2000, available at  <http://ippfnet.ippf.org/pub/IPPF_News/News_Details_s.asp?ID=284>, accessed 11 June 2001.

[75] Ibid.

[76] “Scorning the Nerds,” new internationalist; issue 191, January 1989, available at <http://www.oneworld.org/ni/issue191/briefly.htm>, accessed 13 May 2001.

[77]   Sue Ann Tellman.

[78] Steven Carr, “Desperate,” new internationalist; Issue 246, August 1993, available at <http://www.oneworld.org/ni/issue246/update.htm>, accessed 19 May 2001.

[79] Ibid.

[80] Ibid.

[81] Ministry of Community Development and Sports.

[82] Alfred Choi and Jeffrey Edleson, 85.

[83] “More Malay women in Singapore seek divorce,”  Singapore Window, Agence France-Presse in Singapore, available at <http://www.singapore-window.org/sw99/91010afp.htm>, accessed 2 June 2001.

[84] Ibid.

[85]   U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor.

[86] Ibid.

[87] Ibid.

[88] Alfred Choi and Jeffrey Edleson, 84.

[89]   U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor.


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