The Covid-19 pandemic has shown the importance of retaining public trust and maintaining trusted sources of information, said Minister for Communications and Information (MCI) Josephine Teo during the Committee of Supply (COS) Debate on Mar. 4, 2022.
Messages helped decide on vaccination
According to Teo, three in four members of the public think that the government have provided sufficient information on Covid-19 in recent months.
Over 86 per cent of the polls agreed that these messages have helped in their decision to get vaccinated.
“We could not have handled a public health crisis if the public didn’t trust the health authorities, or didn’t believe the information they were receiving.
That is precisely why, from the very outset, we resolved to keep the public informed as fully and as expeditiously as possible.”
Teo added that the government was determined to tell it as it is and “never fudge, sugar-coat, never hide.”
She quoted Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong’s observation that people would not have understood the need for safe management measures or abided by them had Singapore been a low-trust society.
Teo also said that there has to be appropriate laws to preserve public trust.
POFMA, for example, has allowed the government to take swift action on 20 occasions to curb Covid-19-related misinformation.
More following government platforms
The pandemic has also seen an increase in Singaporeans following government communication channels.
According to Teo, Gov.sg’s 10 platforms have gained about two million more subscribers compared to before the pandemic.
Meanwhile, e-Getai shows commissioned by the ministry for seniors in Singapore had over 7.5 million views, while catchy music videos had over nine million views online.
REACH, the government’s feedback unit, also expanded its digital outreach.
More than 70,000 Singaporeans contributed their feedback to REACH in 2021, an increase from 59,000 in 2020.
“It is critical that we maintain these high level of trust as we strive to bounce back from the Covid-19 pandemic and see through future crises as Singapore together.”
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Top image from Lawrence Wong/FB and gov.sg/Youtube.