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April 24, 2013 / Andrew

Garment Factory Collapses in Bangladesh

In the most recent tragedy of the Bangladeshi garment industry, scores of factory workers are reported dead after the collapse of a building yesterday in Savar (outside of Dhaka) that housed several manufacturers of clothing destined for Western markets. Hundreds others were injured, or remain buried under the rubble, with the death toll certain to rise.  As the Financial Times writes:

The tragedy comes five months after at least 117 people were killed in a garment factory fire in the country, and will raise fresh questions about basic safety standards and management practices in a $19bn industry catering mainly to western companies and consumers.

Reuters reports that of the five factories housed in the building, at least one provided clothing destined for Wal-Mart, and others contracted with European retailers.  Notorious for its more relaxed building codes and enforcement, Bangladesh has been the site of some of the worst garment factory disasters of recent years.

Green America’s allies at ILRF are hosting former Bangladeshi garment workers Kalpona Akter and Sumi Abedin (survivor of the 2012 fire noted above) at Gap headquarters in San Francisco this Thursday, April 25.   Please join them, if you are able, to speak out against tragedies like yesterday’s collapse and November’s fire.

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