Retailers must accept their responsibilities and commit to full redress for the victims of the disaster and accede to the Bangladesh Building and Fire Safety Agreement.
We are calling on all brands sourcing from the devastated Rana Plaza factories which collapsed on Wednesday 24th April 2013, killing more than 400 workers, to provide emergency relief, medical costs and compensation to all those affected by the tragedy.
They are also being asked, along with other key brands and stakeholders, to ensure an immediate and transparent investigation into the events surrounding the collapse and to take urgent steps to prevent future tragedies in the industry.
Brands sourcing from the Rana Plaza factories should send a delegation to Bangladesh immediately to meet victims and their families, trade unions and labour rights organisations and work with other buyers to ensure these demands are met.
Full redress for the victims
- Ensure that a victims’ database of survivors and deceased workers is set up immediately and completed properly in collaboration with relief agencies.
- Work with the Red Cross and other relief agencies to ensure emergency relief is given to all victims and their families, including medical treatment and coverage of all medical costs short and long term.
- Pay sufficient money into a compensation fund immediately to expedite the dispersal of compensation and not wait for calculations and lists to be developed.
- Ensure full and fair compensation covering loss of future earnings as well as damages is paid to the injured and families of the dead, based on the compensation formula proposed by the unions and labour rights groups supporting the Bangladesh Fire and Building Safety Agreement. The full compensation package should also cover educational fees for the children of the deceased.
- Ensure wages continue to be paid to all workers (meeting legal entitlements at minimum) and that workers are paid legal severance and offered priority hiring in nearby suppliers at equivalent or higher salary levels.
- Work with the government to set up a permanent workers’ welfare fund to cover compensation for industrial incidents and workplace injuries.
- Urge the government to ensure that the ministry of health implements extraordinary measures in relation to Rana Plaza.
Full and transparent investigation
- Support an independent investigation into the building collapse and prosecution for those culpable.
- Publish all audit reports relating to Rana Plaza factories.
Prevention of future incidents
- Sign and immediately implement the comprehensive and independent Bangladesh Fire and Building Safety Agreement that has been developed by local and global unions and labour rights organizations. The programme includes independent inspections, public reporting, mandatory repairs and renovations, a central role for workers and unions in both oversight and implementation, supplier contracts with sufficient financing and adequate pricing, and a binding contract to make these commitments enforceable.
- Publicly disclose full supplier list and all factory audit reports for Bangladeshi supplier factories.
- Actively promote freedom of association and bargaining rights for workers through access agreements to create an atmosphere where workers can freely join trade unions and form factory level union
- Ensure a living wage is paid to all workers.