HDB rental flats for singles
I’m glad that we have reformed our housing policies for single unwed parents. I thank HDB for providing the much needed helping hand to the single unweds.
We can do more also for singles. Many of the lower-income singles are in need of rental housing due to various circumstances and many are seniors.
HDB does help under The Joint Singles Scheme (JSS), which requires single tenants to rent a flat together with a flatmate.
As they are single, many are unable to find a flatmate and are in the end housed with a stranger. I’m sure many members in this House would have handled MPS cases of flatmates not getting along.
I do understand HDB’s concerns that there may not be an ample supply of rental flats to cater for every single to rent a flat alone.
However, I understand MND does allow a person to rent a flat alone on a case-by-case basis.
Can MND review the JSS and consider publishing a set of specific criteria under which a person can rent a flat alone?
Legalise cat ownership in HDB flats
I have spent more than a quarter of my life speaking up about our policy of not allowing the keeping of cats in HDB flats. I last spoke up about this last year, providing various solutions to the concerns MND has.
I hope we can change our policy to reflect what we already accept in reality – that HDB residents are allowed to keep cats, which can be removed if they are found to cause disamenities in the community.
This is an issue that affects thousands who currently live in HDB flats and keep cats. It also affects Singaporeans overseas. Sallie wrote to me recently and said, “Thank you for raising this issue again. It is one of the reasons why I can’t come back to Singapore. I have 2 cats here in Bangkok and I have no place to keep them. I can only afford to buy a HDB flat if I go home as I can’t possibly afford private properties”.
I hope this year and at this COS, we will finally have the good news that we will allow the keeping of cats in HDB flats with specific conditions that will address any issues of disamenities. I should add that Speaker supports this change in policy as well.
Watch the speech here.