- The death toll reached hundreds of people as rescuers continued to search for injured and missing, after a huge section of an eight-story building that housed several garment factories splintered into a pile of concrete.
- Wal-Mart, Disney, Gap, Old Navy, Banana Republic, Philips VanHeusen, Tommy Hilfiger, Calvin Klein, and Swedish clothing giant G&M reject safety proposals by the manufactures because they would be legally binding and costly.
- Survivor of Bangladesh’s Tazreen Factory Fire Urges U.S. Retailers to Stop Blocking Worker Safety
- Sweatshops on Wheels
Kay Johnson and Julhas Alam, Associated Press / NPR
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A Bangladeshi woman weeps as she holds a picture of her and her missing husband as she waits at the site of a building that collapsed Wednesday in Savar, near Dhaka, Bangladesh, Friday, April 26, 2013. (AP Photo - Kevin Frayer)
April 26, 2013 | As Bangladesh reels from the deaths of hundreds of garment workers in a building collapse, the refusal of global retailers to pay for strict nationwide factory inspections is bringing renewed scrutiny to an industry that has profited from a country notorious for its hazardous workplaces and subsistence-level wages.
After a factory fire killed 112 garment workers in November, clothing brands and retailers continued to reject a union-sponsored proposal to improve safety throughout Bangladesh's $20 billion garment industry. Instead, companies expanded a patchwork system of private audits and training that labor groups say improves very little in a country where official inspections are lax and factory owners have close relations with the government.
Survivor of Bangladesh’s Tazreen Factory Fire Urges U.S. Retailers to Stop Blocking Worker Safety, Amy Goodman, Democracy Now!
- This week’s Bangladeshi factory disaster comes five months after a massive fire killed at least 112 garment workers at Bangladesh’s Tazreen factory, which made clothing sold by Wal-Mart, among other companies. Earlier this month, Wal-Mart refused to compensate victims and their families, even though it was apparently the factory’s largest buyer. We’re joined by Sumi Abedin, a worker who survived the Tazreen fire by jumping from the factory’s third story, breaking both her arm and foot in the process. She is currently touring the United States to call on retailers like Wal-Mart, The Gap and Disney to take the lead on improving working conditions in Bangladesh. We also speak with Kalpona Akter of the Bangladesh Center for Worker Solidarity and Charlie Kernaghan of the Institute for Global Labour and Human Rights.
- Video and transcript…
Sweatshops on Wheels, Chris Hedges, Truthdig
The assault on public transportation, which has devastating consequences for the poor who cannot get to work or the doctor's office without it, is not new.