Bangladesh, as of 2013, was notorious for its substandard wages, the lowest in the world at $35 a month, unsafe working conditions, and resistance to labor rights and organizing.
An enforceable Accord on Fire and Building Safety in Bangladesh has been entered into by retailers, mostly European, which pledges both inspections and funding to improve conditions in Bangladesh factories. There is a competing voluntary program the Bangladesh Worker Safety Initiative by leading American retailers. Founding firms include Canadian Tire Corporation, Limited; Carter's Inc.; The Children's Place Retail Stores Inc.; Gap Inc.; Hudson’s Bay Company; IFG Corp.; J.C. Penney Company Inc.; The Jones Group Inc.; Kohl’s Department Stores; L. L. Bean Inc.; Macy's; Nordstrom Inc.; Public Clothing Company; Sears Holdings Corporation; Target Corporation; VF Corporation; and Wal-Mart Stores Inc.
There is a large fabric industry and little or no facilities for treatment of waste water.
Notes and references
- "Obama to Suspend Trade Privileges With Bangladesh" article by Steven Greenhouse in The New York Times June 27, 2013
- "Think Tank Releasing Rival Bangladesh Safety Accord Receives Funds From Walmart and Its Lobbyists" article in The Nation
- Bangladesh Worker Safety Initiative July 10, 2013
- "Bangladesh Pollution, Told in Colors and Smells" article by Jim Yardley in The New York Times July 14, 2013