600 employees went to work and didn’t come home, on the backlash of 112 workers killed just five months before. Bangladesh workers want reform, but they don’t want to scare off international companies. Nobody wants to die that way.
Instead of saving factory owners who violate the rules
Mutsyaizur Rahman, the executive director of the Center for Policy Dialogue, “Throw the violators out instead of putting the whole sector at risk.”
The association’s president, Atiqul Islam, said they are ramping up there oversight
They’ve asked all companies to provide structural design plans, and hired ten extra engineers to review the plans, “Many factories have close which have cracks because they fear collapse.” The group is focusing on wounded workers and providing compensation to the victims. Next, sitting down with the European Union and the United Nations’ International Labor Organization.
Bangladesh’s fragile government must step up
There are plenty of rules already on the books, the problem is enforcement. Pursuant to reform for some time, necessary amendments to the labor laws have been made, and it’s up to parliament to pass the bill on the building code, then enforce them. The government must want better for its people.
Low income workers fear the companies will pull out
Disney has already announced they will no longer source merchandise from Bangladesh because of occupational safety issues. Companies have profited from the cheap labor for years, instead of leaving they should come forward and help solve the crisis. Buyers also have a responsibility to help ensure better working conditions, and it’s recommended a the garment industry set up a watchdog organization. Isn’t that like asking a ‘John’ to set up a watchdog organization to make sure the prostitutes have better working conditions? The garment buyers want cheap goods obviously at any cost, and this has been going on for decades.
Bangladesh’s labor has taken to the streets in protest
The working industry’s deadliest disaster is causing nationwide demonstrations, “Hang the killers. Hang the factory owners,” on what is already a public holiday, May Day. The main rally estimated 20,000 people in attendance. “We want justice for these murders.”
So far eight people have been arrested and charged with “death by negligence,” for the collapse of an eight-story building in which they were told was safe after the cracks were reported in the building.
Garment industry needs to make amends and pay restitution
Bangladesh’s low-income workers may be poor but they are not stupid, they want the same wages as the workers in the United States, and the same working conditions that American workers have come to expect. There is good reason why so many people from other countries long to be US citizens.
The ‘cheap labor’ state of mind that prevails in the garment industry needs to come to a halt, all workers deserve safe working conditions. Taking advantage of the working poor doesn’t just go on in the garment industry.
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