World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


Payments To Survivors Of Bangladesh Factory Collapse

Bangladesh: One Year On, Un Welcomes Initial Payments To Survivors Of Factory Collapse

New York, Apr 23 2014 5:00PM

One year after the global garment industry’s worst industrial accident, the fund chaired by the United Nations to compensate victims of Bangladesh’s Rana Plaza factory collapse has begun issuing its initial round of payments, as efforts to address the root causes of the disaster continue.

The Coordination Committee, chaired by the International Labour Organization (ILO), yesterday paid 50,000 BDT (Bangladeshi Taka) – about $645 – to each victim and the families of those who died in the 24 April tragedy, when the factory collapsed on the outskirts of Dhaka, the capital, killing more than 1,000 mostly female workers, and wounding thousands more.

“These initial payments are good news, now it needs to be ensured that all legitimate claims are honoured and that the injured victims or their surviving families receive full entitlements for their losses,” <"http://www.ilo.org/global/about-the-ilo/media-centre/press-releases/WCMS_241358/lang--en/index.htm">said Gilbert Houngbo, ILO Deputy Director-General for Field Operations and Partnerships, welcoming the payments that were announced at a ceremony in Dhaka.

“More donations to the Rana Plaza Trust Fund are needed to reach the $40 million target and ensure fair treatment for victims and their families, who are struggling to rebuild their lives,” Mr. Houngbo added.

According to a <"http://www.ranaplaza-arrangement.org/news/press-release-the-rana-plaza-coordination-committee-pays-out-bdt-50-000-to-each-victim-of-rana-plaza-collapse">news release, this first round of payments, which also includes non-injured workers present at the factory at the time of the accident, is in line with the decision of the Coordination Committee to provide all victims a meaningful sum in advance of the 24 April anniversary of the factory collapse.

The Rana Plaza Arrangement and its Geneva-based Trust Fund were <"http://www.ranaplaza-arrangement.org/">set up in September 2013 and are supported by voluntary contributions made by global brands and others. The Fund has so far received only about $15 million of the approximately $40 million total estimated amount calculated to compensate all the workers, according to the ILO.

“Our first priority is to get compensation to the victims,” Mr. Houngbo said in a <"http://www.ilo.org/global/about-the-ilo/multimedia/video/video-interviews/WCMS_241218/lang--en/index.htm">video statement, adding that ILO is also set to work with the Government of Bangladesh and the wider international community to tackle “structural challenges” so incidents such as the Rana Plaza collapse never occur again, and to help Governments achieve the minimum institutional capacity to ensure safe working environments for garment workers.

He said the ILO was backing a systemic approach that ensures that any policy measures are implemented in ways that keep productive capacities competitive. Such an approach would protect and promote workers’ rights and improve living and working conditions.

While the issue was a priority matter for Bangladesh and other major garment-producing countries, Mr. Houngbo stressed that “everybody has to do their part” – from consumers, who might be asked to pay $1 or 1 euro more to ensure safe working conditions and improved livelihoods, to employers, workers’ unions and major corporations.
There would need to be a major effort to ensure that that extra dollar or euro “goes to the workers pockets and does not end up at the contractor or subcontractor level. These are the issues that we will be examining with the international community in months and years to come,” he said.

Mr. Houngbo, who is in Dhaka ahead of the anniversary, is due to meet with the Prime Minister of Bangladesh, Government ministers, employers’ and workers’ organizations, ambassadors and representatives of initiatives involved in improving working conditions in the country’s ready-made garment sector.

Tomorrow he is expected to address a high-level event – One Year after Rana Plaza: Progress and the Way Forward – organized by the Government of Bangladesh and the ILO.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Demonetisation: Gordon Campbell On India’s Huge Socio-Economic Experiment

Without much coverage at all in the West, India has just been engaged for the past few weeks in one of the world’s biggest socio-economic experiments since the Cultural Revolution in China. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Death Of Fidel Castro

New Zealand likes to think we played our part – via the 1981 Springbok tour – in bringing the apartheid regime in South Africa to an end… Jacob Zuma treated the death of Fidel Castro at the weekend as an occasion to pay a heartfelt tribute to the thousands of Cuban soldiers who travelled across the world to inflict the first significant military defeat on the forces of white supremacy. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The US Election Home Stretch

Once again at the business end of a US election, the result will hinge on the same old bits of geography as always: the Five Crucial Counties in Ohio, the Two Crucial Counties in Pennsylvania and the I-4 Interstate Corridor in Florida that runs from Tampa Bay through Orlando to Daytona Beach. More>>

ALSO:

Meanwhile:

Haiti: $5 Million To Kick-Start Aid In Wake Of Hurricane Matthew

UN emergency fund allocates $5 million to kick-start assistance in wake of Hurricane Matthew More>>

ALSO:

Preliminary Results: MH17 Investigation Report

The Joint Investigation Team (JIT) is convinced of having obtained irrefutable evidence to establish that on 17 July 2014, flight MH-17 was shot down by a BUK missile from the 9M38-series. According to the JIT there is also evidence identifying the launch location that involves an agricultural field near Pervomaiskyi which, at the time, was controlled by pro-Russian fighters. More>>

ALSO:

Not Helen Clark: António Guterres Favourite For Next UN Secretary-General

Former Portuguese Prime Minister António Guterres has emerged as the clear favourite to become the next United Nations Secretary-General following the sixth secret ballot held today by the UN Security Council, which is expected to take a formal decision tomorrow and forward Mr. Guterres’ name to the 193-Member General Assembly for final confirmation. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The End Game In Spain (And Other World News)

The coverage of international news seems almost entirely dependent on a random selection of whatever some overseas news agency happens to be carrying overnight... Here are a few interesting international stories that have largely flown beneath the radar this past week. More>>

Amnesty/Human Rights Watch: Appalling Abuse, Neglect Of Refugees On Nauru

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>

ALSO:

Other Australian Detention

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news