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MHA COS 2023: Tackling Terrorism, Combating Drugs and Enhancing Rehabilitation

Highlights from the COS speech by MOS Assoc Prof Muhammad Faishal Ibrahim.
COS MOS Faishal Article Cover
GRAPHIC: Joash Tan

On 27 February, Minister of State Assoc Prof Muhammad Faishal Ibrahim outlined how the Home Team will tackle the threat of terrorism, drug abuse and improve rehabilitation of inmates at the Committee of Supply (COS) Debate  in Parliament. 

Here are the key points from MOS Faishal’s speech. 

Tackling the Terrorism Threat
Terrorism continues to pose a serious threat to our security. The Home Team will:
i) Continue to cooperate closely with overseas counterparts to share intelligence on potential terror threats and conduct joint operations.
ii) Combat terrorism financing through current processes like the Anti-money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism Steering Committee, and working closely with private sector partners under the Countering the Financing of Terrorism Operational Group.
iii) Intensify outreach to schools and Institutes of Higher Learning for early intervention against youth radicalisation.

Bolstering the Fight Against Drug Abuse
The Home Team will continue with the harm prevention approach through: preventive drug education (PDE), tough laws and robust enforcement, and rehabilitation and aftercare.

PDE: CNB will target youths, through various channels. One of which is working with MOE to ensure all secondary schools conduct at least one PDE programme per year, beginning from 2023.

Tough Laws and Robust Enforcement: From January 2023 onwards, to deter Singaporeans from taking cannabis overseas due to the increased availability, CNB has stepped up enforcement with Saliva Test Kits at Checkpoints and in joint roadblock operations with SPF to prevent potential drug abusers from driving when drugged.

On 24 February, MHA introduced a bill to amend the Misuse of Drugs Act to control psychoactive substances based on the effects rather than chemical composition, so that CNB can take swifter action against emerging psychoactive substances.

Rehabilitation and Aftercare: CNB officers will take on specialist roles in supervision to optimise resource deployment. The Community Supervision Sessions (CoSS) piloted in 2019 has been progressively rolled out and will be available to all supervisees by 1H 2023. 

Enhancing Rehabilitation
Different inmates will be supported in more targeted manner based on their different needs.

During Incarceration: SPS will enhance the content and delivery of in-care programmes such as Psychology-based Correctional Programmes (PCPs) for different inmate profiles.

More Support for Ex-offenders: To reduce long-term recidivism, the SPS and Yellow Ribbon Singapore (YRSG) will i) upskill ex-offenders to enhance their employability and ii) strengthen pro-social support in the community.  

i) The upskilling measures include:
a) SPS to work with ITE to run more short courses;
b) A new YR Sandbox initiative by YRSG to develop new career options in emerging or fast-growing sectors like digital, built environment and agri-tech; and
c) Expansion of TAP & Grow in 2023 to the Food Services sector which will benefit up to 700 inmates and ex-offenders per year.

ii) The pro-social support include:
a) Formation of a Desistors’ Network for ex-offenders to provide mutual support to one another;
b) Deepen the Throughcare Volunteer Framework (TVF) to match all Reformative Trainees with Befrienders; and 
c) New scheme for volunteers to provide pro-social support and assist in case management of selected supervisees emplaced on Community-Based Programmes.

MHA Committee of Supply (COS) Debate 2023
Read the COS 2023 speech delivered by Minister of State Assoc Prof Muhammad Faishal Ibrahim. For more information on MHA COS 2023, visit the MHA COS 2023 webpage.

Written by

Lynn Ng


27 February 2023

Keeping Singapore Drug Free
Corrections & Rehabilitation
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