In a multiracial society like Singapore’s, some workers might struggle with language barriers as they have yet to master the common language spoken.
This ‘chicken talking to a duck situation’ tends to worsen when a purchase goes wrong.
When a woman at City Square FairPrice supermarket realised that the staff serving her could not communicate in English, she decided to record their conversation and post a video online.
She also documented her unhappiness over the way the staff had cut the fish, saying it wasn’t done correctly.
NTUC FairPrice is aware of the incident, and they’re currently investigating.
Woman asks FairPrice staff why she doesn’t speak English
The customer uploaded footage of the incident to YouTube on 21 Mar, which took place at the fish stall of a FairPrice outlet at City Square.
It started with her questioning why the employee was working in a FairPrice outlet in Singapore if she could not communicate in English.
When the employee could not reply, the customer switched to Chinese, asking her if she spoke English. To this, she responded that she was learning.
Unfortunately, the customer still couldn’t understand her words, and eventually, she began ordering what she wanted.
Approaches customer service to complain
In the next part of the video, the customer complained about the employee to another staff at the outlet, presumably someone in a managerial position.
Telling the manager, whom the woman refers to as ‘team lead’ in the video, that the staff couldn’t speak English, she asked why patrons had to deal with “such people”.
The customer moved on to enquire about the status of her work pass, going so far as to allege that she had a salary of more than S$4,000.
She then claimed that the employee should not work in the store, as she could not communicate with customers in English.
Showing the staff her recording, she again said th...