Friday, 18 April 2014

Tissue paper peddlers are unlicensed hawkers, says NEA

By Siau Ming En, Channel NewsAsia, 17 Apr 2014

Mobile peddlers selling packets of tissue paper on the streets are unlicensed hawkers, said the National Environment Agency (NEA) in response to a letter posted on a website that these peddlers are charged a S$120 licence fee.

"Although technically in breach of the laws against itinerant hawking, those peddlers who are needy are referred to the relevant agencies by the NEA for appropriate assistance," the agency said on its Facebook page on Tuesday.

In a letter posted on the socio-political website The Real Singapore, the writer had questioned the need for street hawkers to pay S$120 to get a licence following his encounter with a visually-impaired man who sells tissue paper for extra income.

The NEA said that, at present, only 11 street hawkers under its Street Hawking Scheme are licensed to sell tissue paper in town council areas.

Under the scheme, which started in 2000, those who meet the eligibility criteria pay a nominal fee of S$120 a year, or S$10 a month, to peddle their wares at fixed locations without having to pay rent.

In all, 362 people have been issued licences to sell items such as ice-cream, nuts, crackers, canned drinks, costume jewellery, newspapers, phone cards and toiletries.

In response to TODAY's queries, the NEA said unlicensed peddlers selling tissue paper at coffee shops and hawker centres will be warned to stop selling their wares.

"If they ignore the warning, the NEA will take enforcement action against them, just as it does for other illegal hawkers," it added.

Since 2012, the agency has taken enforcement actions against 11 cases of unlicensed tissue-paper peddlers.

However, the NEA reiterated that it refers those who are genuinely needy to relevant agencies for assistance.


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