Bangladeshi Labour Right Activist Murdered.

Aminul Islam
Aminul Islam

Aminul Islam is a Bangladeshi labour rights activist and former garment worker who was tortured and murdered in Dhaka on April 4 2012, his body was dumped outside the capital city and found by local police. To date no one has been arrested or brought to trial for his murder.

Aminul 39,  worked for the Bangladesh Center for Worker Solidarity (BCWS) and the Bangladesh Garment and Industrial Workers Federation (BGIWF).

In June 2010 Aminul was detained by officials of the Bangladesh National Intelligence Service (NSI) where  he reported he was subjected to severe and repeated beatings.

On the evening of the 4th, after having observed a police van parked outside, Aminul and a colleague had closed the local BCWS office fearing harassment or arrest. He was last seen alive leaving his office to meet with a worker who had called seeking assistance. According to the police report, Aminul Islam’s body bore signs of brutal torture.

Repression against trade unionists and labour rights activists in Bangladesh is a serious problem, and worker protests have been met with violence many times. In particular, the wage protests of 2010 resulted in hundreds of arrests of workers and trade unionists including Aminul himself.

According to Aminul, during his detention in 2010 he was subjected to severe beatings at the hands of the National Intelligence Service (NSI) who according to his  statement,were looking to force false testimony incriminating his colleagues.

Dozens of labour leaders are still facing charges of instigating riots and related activities; charges regarded as baseless by international labour and human rights organisations.

CCC is calling for the Bangladeshi authorities to launch an immediate and impartial investigation into the killing and for them to work tirelessly to bring the perpetrators to justice. We are also calling on supporters worldwide, including EU missions and other organisations to generate similar pressure on the Bangladeshi authorities in order to stop the culture of impunity that has led to this tragic murder.

Send a letter to the Bangladesh government now calling for justice for Aminul!




Deadly Denim. The story behind your killer jeans.

Sandblasting is a process applied to give jeans their worn-out look. The process blasts denim with sand at high pressure to wear away the top surface of the textile and has long been practiced in the global garment industry. The effect became increasingly popular in jean trends over the past decade adding considerable value to the final product.
While other techniques such as stone-washing or enzyme treatments result in the same effects, the relative low cost, simple techniques and more importantly the speed that orders can be completed, sandblasting remains a favoured process in the fast fashion industry.


Sandblasting has long been linked to the fatal lung disease silicosis. According to the World Health Organisation it is one of the oldest occupational diseases and still kills thousands of people every year, everywhere in the world.

It is an incurable lung disease caused by inhalation of dust containing free crystalline silica. It is irreversible and, moreover, the disease progresses even when exposure stops. Extremely high exposures are associated with much shorter latency and more rapid disease progression.



Sandblasting was traditionally a process used in the mining and construction industry and strict restrictions and regulations have been imposed on these industries since the ILO/WHO International Programme on the Global Elimination of Silicosis, launched in 1995.

But while miners and construction workers could be expected to develop silicosis after 15 to 20 years of exposure, due to the lack of regulations, health and safety standards and the intensity of production, silicosis has been diagnosed in garment workers after as little as 6 months exposure.



As a result of the Clean Clothes Campaign’s 2010 ‘Killer Jeans’ campaign, many companies have banned the use of sandblasting in their clothing lines, but a new CCC report reveals that regardless of whether a brand has ‘banned’ sandblasting or not, sandblasting – both manual and mechanical – is still commonly used.

Download the CCC Deadly Denim report here.








The Clean Clothes Campaign Ireland is asking;

Retailers to publicly ban the use of sandblasting in their supply chains .

WHO / ILO to recognise the garment industry in its Programme on the Global Ellimination of Silicosis

For the Irish government to ban the importation of sandblasted denim into Ireland and to propose the wider EU import ban of the same during it’s EU presidency in 2013.

Support our call for the Irish Government to stand up for the lives of garment workers around the world.

Copy, paste  and send the below e-mail to your local TD


Dear Sir / Madam,

I am a supporter of the Clean Clothes Campaign Ireland, a coalition organisation set up in 2010 by Re-dress, Trócaire, MANDATE, ICTU and Cómhlámh to promote and campaign for fair and transparent labour practices within the global clothing supply chain.

Clean Clothes Campaign Ireland is the  part of an international alliance of organisations, NGO’s, and trade unions operating in 16 European countries with a network of over 200 global partners. The Clean Clothes Campaign Ireland works together with these partners to conduct research into conditions for workers on the factory floors in garment producing countries and examine retailer policies and business practices that affect them.

As my local TD and Dáil representative, I am writing to you today to ask you to show your support of the Clean Clothes Campaign Ireland’s campaign in the Dáil and join the call for an import ban of a clothing product which is costing the lives of thousands of garment workers each year.