The Maquila Solidarity Network (MSN) is a labour and women's rights organization that supports the efforts of workers in global supply chains to win improved wages and working conditions and a better quality of life (More)
On September 17, thousands of Cambodian garment workers took part in lunchtime protests organized by eight Cambodian unions at an estimated 139 factories around the country, demanding a $177 per month minimum wage.
Over fifty human rights, religious, international development, trade union, women’s, teacher, student, community and investor organizations have released an Open Letter calling on the Canadian government to publicly urge Canadian companies whose apparel products are made in Bangladesh to contribute generously to a trust fund for the approximately 2,500 workers injured and the families of over 1,100 workers killed in the Rana Plaza building collapse.
April 24th marked the one-year anniversary of one of the most devastating industry tragedies in history. Yet, despite global outrage at the number of unnecessary worker deaths and injuries suffered as a result of this preventable disaster, most of the survivors and families of those killed are still waiting for just compensation.
March 24: One month before the one-year anniversary of the Rana Plaza building collapse, the survivors and families of those killed can finally register claims for compensation with the Rana Plaza Trust Fund which would entitle them to an advance payment toward their claim by April 24.
On February 24, 10 months after the Rana Plaza building collapse in Bangladesh killed over 1,100 garment workers and injured over 2,000 more, 70 trade unions and other civil society organizations released a joint statement calling on all companies whose products are made in Bangladesh to Pay Up by contributing to the Donor Trust Fund for the Rana Plaza victims.
Signatories to the joint statement include 22 Canadian organizations, 30 Bangladeshi groups, the Global Unions IndustriALL and UNI, and organizations from across Asia, Europe and in the United States. To date, only seven companies, including Canada’s Loblaw, have publicly committed financial contributions to the Rana Plaza Donors Trust Fund.
On March 8th, International Women’s Day, an expected 30,000 garment workers, the vast majority of whom are women, will come together in Phnom Penh’s Freedom Park for a mass Forum on Labour Rights to continue their struggle for an increase in the minimum wage to US$160/month, trade union rights, and the release of 21 activists who have been held in jail since early January. Meanwhile, photos published in local newspapers just one day prior to the forum showed approximately 2,000 riot police preparing for tomorrow’s Forum.
On February 10, trade union and human and labour rights organizations around the world staged demonstrations and delivered messages to Cambodian embassies calling for the release of 21 workers who are being detained for participating in a national strike for an increase in the minimum wage.
Thirty major apparel brands, together with the global unions ITUC, IndustriALL and UNI, have signed a joint letter to Cambodia’s prime minister Hun Sen, calling on his government to launch a prompt and thorough investigation into violent events of January 2-3.
Solidarity actions are taking place around the world in support of Cambodian garment workers who are facing government repression for taking part in a massive strike for an increased minimum wage. The workers currently receive some of the lowest wages in garment-producing countries around the world.
(Photo: National Garment Workers Federation October, 2013)
Twenty-five human rights, faith, women's, teacher, student, community, overseas development and trade union organizations have signed an Open Letter calling on Canadian retailers and brands to sign the Accord on Fire and Building Safety in Bangladesh. To date, only one Canadian company, Loblaw (owner of Joe Fresh), has signed the Accord.
The companies to which the letter has been sent - Canadian Tire (owner of Mark's and Sport Chek), Giant Tiger, Hudson's Bay Company, Sears Canada, Walmart, YM Inc. (owner of Suzy Shier, Stitches, Bluenotes, Urban Planet, Sirens) - have so far refused to sign the legally-binding Accord. Instead, they have joined a voluntary, company-controlled initiative, the Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety.