Singapore canes approximately 3,000 illegal workers and entrants annually, according to the Singapore Prison Service. A spokesman reported with pride that 2006 has been a record year in illegals caught. “Our methods of catching illegals are improving, reflecting improving efficiency in the Singapore Police Force.” He explained that the illegals typically have a darker skin tone from local Chinese Singaporeans due to their origins in surrounding countries, making them easy to identify for increased police scrutiny on the streets. If they are poor, they are quite readily rounded up and detained, caned, and deported. While this has not proven troublesome in the past, the increasing workload has upset the caning workers resulting in a work stoppage.
“We get tired after about the fifth caning,” complained a Singaporean caner. “The work is very bloody, and we tire of hearing all these strapped-down naked foreigners scream in agony all day. Can’t they take the beatings without making such noise?” Another worker complained of carpal-tunnel syndrome, caused by repetitive motions with his wrist due to the large number of illegal border-crossers to cane. The Singapore Prison Service is taking these complaints very seriously in order to avoid a possible strike. “Our caners usually like their jobs. We try to hire people with sadistic tendencies so that their jobs can be pleasurable, but unfortunately some workers simply complain too much,” said the spokesman. “If this work stoppage continues, it will be difficult to find replacement skilled caners. It takes several hundred sessions before a caner gains sufficient skill to maul the skin across the whole buttocks. The less experienced caners usually just cane near the middle of the buttocks haphazardly, resulting in much trembling and screaming, but only until stroke 8 (it numbs after that due to nerve ending annihilation). We prefer a longer, more agonizing type of caning with as much broken skin as possible. Making the caning as painful as possible is actually required by Singapore law.” Workers countered that they were not given adequate hearing protection to protect them from the immigrants’ screams. “The immigrants are usually very poor, trying to earn money to send back to their families (who are also poor) in neighboring countries. They should definitely be caned to a bloody pulp and then imprisoned. But not at the expense of our hearing.”