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Hawkers Forced to Collect and Clean Own Dishes Despite Paying Over S$1000 in Monthly Fees

Hawkers at the Albert Centre Food Centre are steaming mad that they now have to collect and clean their dishes despite paying for dishwashing and cutlery-sorting services.

One stallholder complained that the service to collect, sort and return their dishes costs S$470 a month, and dishwashing services cost S$700.

Despite forking out S$1170 a month, she now has to rush to collect her dishes and cutlery in between serving customers.

What is more frustrating, according to some stallholders, is they have to do the collecting and washing themselves because the dirty dishes are not cleared and cleaned fast enough and they run out of dishes to use.

Another hawker, who runs a wanton mee stall, said that this problem has been going on for over 2 weeks.

He added that the tray return racks are often so packed that customers pile up their trays and dirty utensils on the tables and floor.

As a result, around 100 pairs of his chopsticks have gone missing.

A cleaning supervisor at the food centre said there used to be 11 staff, but now there only 8.

He said that most of the staff are elderly folks, and they cannot manage during peak hours.

The cleaning contractor has blamed a lack of manpower for the problems, saying that few Singaporeans want to work as cleaners and it is difficult to get work permits approved for foreign workers.

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