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