BIPARTISAN POLICY CENTER (BPC) ISSUES JOINT LETTER COMMENDING ALLIANCE FOR BANGLADESH WORKER SAFETY ON ‘IMPRESSIVE’ RECORD
Alliance praised for efforts to protect, train and compensate workers; recommendations made for continued progress
Washington, D.C. (October 6, 2014) -- The Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety (Alliance) has made great progress toward protecting workers and improving garment factory safety, say former Senators George Mitchell (D-ME), Co-founder of the Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC), and Olympia Snowe (R-ME), BPC Senior Fellow, in a letter issued by the BPC to Alliance Independent Chair Ellen Tauscher.
Washington, D.C. – In a forum today to review progress of the Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety (Alliance) following its first year, Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC) Co-founder George Mitchell and Senior Fellow Olympia Snowe announced findings indicating that the Alliance has made “significant and laudable progress” in the effort to improve safety in Bangladesh garment factories. Former Sens. Mitchell and Snowe were joined by Bangladesh Ambassador to the U.S. Muhammad Ziauddin, Alliance Board Chair Ellen Tauscher, key U.S. officials and Bangladesh labor leaders, Alliance leadership and other key stakeholders as findings from an independent assessment of the Alliance were announced.
Collaboration aims to protect employees and prevent tragedies due to unsafe working conditions
Washington, D.C. – The Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety today announced an important partnership with the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), a recognized international leader in fire safety. The collaboration, formalized today in a Memorandum of Understanding signed by both organizations, will empower Alliance Members, factories, workers and other stakeholders with information, guidance and access to training resources that will help protect the health and safety of workers in ready-made garment (RMG) factories in Bangladesh.
Washington, D.C. - Alliance Board Chair Ellen Tauscher and NFPA President James T. Pauley sign important partnership to strengthen safety in Bangladesh garment factories.
As we mark the first year of the Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety, we outline progress made on the ground to ensure that no garment worker in Bangladesh risks his or her life in order to make a living.
In just one year, the Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety has made great strides towards building, fire, and electrical safety in the Bangladesh RMG sector. As evidenced by recent events, if factory management and workers do not work together and take fire safety and prevention seriously, lives can be lost. The Alliance is currently working with over 1 million workers in more than 600 factories on specifically tailored fire safety training programs, which is just the beginning of its five year factory remediation plan. Beginning with worker surveys on knowledge of fire safety, followed by intensive "train-the-trainer" sessions and in-factory trainings, The Alliance is already seeing results.
Fire safety is a joint effort, and when everyone works together and stays proactive, worker safety in Bangladesh is attainable.
One year ago, Bangladesh suffered one of the deadliest garment factory tragedies in history when the Rana Plaza building collapsed. In the weeks following, the magnitude of the disaster and its impact on victims and their families elevated a global conversation about one of the most pressing human rights issues of our time: protecting worker safety.
Everyone connected to Rana Plaza and the Bangladesh garment industry—in government, business, trade, labor and civil society—knew that this was a critical moment to mobilize the resources necessary to create change. The only appropriate response was to take collective action.
Assessment Protocols For Initial Fire Safety and Structural Integrity For Existing Factories
Issued by Committee on Technical Standards and Inspections Of THE ALLIANCE FOR BANGLADESH WORKER SAFETY ISSUED FOR FINAL REVIEW AND COMMENT
Last week, the Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety reaffirmed its commitment to ensure workers in the Bangladesh garment sector had a safe working environment and the ability to communicate safety concerns without the fear of retribution. This had always been a core component of the Alliance members agreement, but the membership took the additional step to explicitly codify the right of workers to refuse unsafe work without the fear of retribution. The capacity of workers to freely communicate safety issues with management is essential to achieving safe factories, and Alliance members are committed to ensuring this right is fully implemented and protected.
The full text of the amendment can be found here.
For immediate release: April 3, 2014
Noted government, labor and international development leaders join Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety Board of Advisors
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety is proud to announce the appointment of 12 Bangladeshi and international leaders to its Board of Advisors. Hailing from key positions within labor, government and academia, the Advisors will provide expertise and leadership to aid Alliance efforts to improve safety for Bangladeshi workers.