Bangladesh: One of the 10 worst na­tions for work­ers: ITUC Re­port

Stitch World - - NEWS TRACK -

The world’s se­cond largest gar­ment ex­porter, Bangladesh boasts of a labour- in­ten­sive in­dus­try that pro­vides em­ploy­ment to a large chunk of the coun­try’s pop­u­la­tion. How­ever, when it comes to work­ers’ rights, the sce­nario ap­par­ently is not en­cour­ag­ing… A re­cent re­port by In­ter­na­tional Trade Union Con­fed­er­a­tion ( ITUC

– a labour rights group) has in­cluded the coun­try amongst the ‘10 worst coun­tries for work­ers’.

The ITUC Global Rights In­dex 2017 re­port states that the con­tin­ued suf­fer­ing in­flicted by the Govern­ment and em­ploy­ers on trade union­ists in the coun­try led to Bangladesh re­ceiv­ing a rating of 5, in­di­cat­ing ‘no guar­an­tee of work­ers’ rights’ there.

The In­dex ranks 139 coun­tries based on 97 in­ter­na­tion­ally rec­og­nized in­di­ca­tors to as­sess where work­ers’ rights are best pro­tected ‘in law’ and ‘in prac­tice’. The other coun­tries on the list are Colom­bia, Egypt, Gu­atemala, Kaza­khstan, Philip­pines, Qatar, South Korea, Turkey and UAE.

Ac­cord­ing to the re­port, po­lice bru­tal­ity, mass ar­rests and dis­crim­i­na­tion are the main con­trib­u­tors to the re­pres­sion of labour or­gan­i­sa­tions in Bangladesh.

It fur­ther high­lights the re­ac­tion of the ready­made gar­ment work­ers’ protests in Ashu­lia, the ap­parel hub of Bangladesh ( in De­cem­ber 2016) as a ma­jor ex­am­ple of such re­pres­sion. 35 union lead­ers and work­ers’ rights ac­tivists were al­legedly de­tained fol­low­ing the week­long strike and com­plaints filed against thou­sands of work­ers.

This study shows that the coun­try needs to step up and pro­tect its work­ers’ in­ter­est( s) and safe­guard them to con­tinue the tremen­dous growth it has been notic­ing, espe­cially in the gar­ment in­dus­try, over the years.

Po­lice bru­tal­ity, mass ar­rests and dis­crim­i­na­tion are the main con­trib­u­tors to re­pres­sion of labour or­gan­i­sa­tions in Bangladesh

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