Social Mobility refers to the ability to change individual social class either by moving upwards or downwards in the stratification system (upper, middle and lower income group). There are four kinds of social mobility. Firstly by inter-generation, such as when a child surpasses his or her parents’ social class. Secondly by intra-generation, such as when a business success led an individual in change of social class. Thirdly would be horizontal mobility, moving in the same category, for example, a technician leaving a company to take up the same position at another company. Finally, by vertical mobility which involves the moving from one social class to another. For instance, a rank promotion in military would be upward mobility, vice versa. Societies that practices closed class system make social mobility close to impossible. In closed class system, individual mobility is limited by the circumstances of birth. On the other hand, in open class system, social mobility is based on individual achievement. Minister Tharman suggested three ways for social mobility to occur. Firstly, to counter inequality issue is to increase the income of the low and middle income group. By doing so, it increases the chances for social mobility and it prevents stagnation of income. According to Key Household Income Trends 2012 report by Singapore Department of Statistic which stated that there was an increment of 7.5% in median monthly income from S$7,040 in 2011 to S$7,570 in 2012 (Singapore visa consultancy AsiaBiz Services, 2013). Similarly, President of United States also increased the minimum wage to $9 from $7.25 an hour to help the lower and middle class (LANDLER, 2013). Secondly, another form for social mobility is to redistribute the income through taxes and transfers without affecting the middle income group. In Singapore, income is taxed on a progressive basis, which means more taxes are collected from the upper income class. According to the current tax structure, the...
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