Home / Knowledge / News / Apparel/Garments / Garment workers starve while fashion brands flourish, Mr Kearney

Garment workers starve while fashion brands flourish, Mr Kearney

04
Aug '08
"Garment workers in Bangladesh are going hungry while their local bosses flaunt their wealth and the big fashion brands sourcing in the country flourish”, said Neil Kearney, General Secretary of the International Textile, Garment and Leather Workers' Federation, speaking in Dhaka.

Describing the situation in Bangladesh as 'obscene' Mr. Kearney said that while local factory owners are living in palatial-style mansions and being driven around in the biggest and most stylish vehicles, the workers who produce the source of this wealth – millions of garments exported daily from Bangladesh – are living in poverty and often denied the legal minimum wage of US$ 25 a month.

“This is a scandal of the utmost proportion”, said Mr. Kearney. “Workers are skipping their own meals so that their children can eat.

One woman told me this week that her only food all day is a dish of rice and watery vegetables served up in the factory canteen at lunchtime.

“Inflation in Bangladesh has rocketed with some items of food doubling in the last six months. Recent reports indicate that basic wage workers in Bangladesh are now spending 70% of their wages on rice alone. Even wealthy middle managers told me they are finding it difficult to survive.

“The US$ 25 legal minimum wage was set two years ago and twelve years after the previous increase. In 2006 it constituted only half of what a family needed to exist. It is under a third of the living wage figure for Bangladesh.

“A total ban on trade union activity for the past eighteen months has rendered Bangladesh's workers voiceless and is driving the country further into poverty.

“It is a sobering thought that it would take a Bangladeshi worker, earning the minimum wage, 85,000 years to earn the US$ 15 million annual wage packet of the CEO of one leading global sporting goods brand sourcing heavily in Bangladesh.

“This obscenity has to stop. Workers must get back their right to form and join trade unions of their choice and to bargain on wages and working conditions with their employers.

“A monthly wage of at least US$ 70 (Taka 4,500) is urgently needed to lift Bangladesh's 2.5 million garment workers out of absolute poverty.

And even an increase of that size wouldn't constitute a living wage. The global and national garment industry can well afford such an earnings hike!” concluded Mr. Kearney.

International Textile, Garment and Leather Workers' Federation


Must ReadView All

Pic: Sorbis / Shutterstock.com

Apparel/Garments | On 14th Apr 2021

Bangladesh apparel exports dip 2.55% in July-March FY21

Readymade garment exports from Bangladesh declined by 2.55 per cent...

Pic: Michael Vi / Shutterstock.com

E-commerce | On 14th Apr 2021

Chinese e-com giant JD.com enters Middle-East market

JD.com, one of China’s largest online retailers, is headed for the...

Pic: Shutterstock

Apparel/Garments | On 14th Apr 2021

Apparel production in Latin America could benefit post-COVID: ST&R

The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated that textile and apparel...

Interviews View All

Textile Industry, Head honchos

Textile Industry
Head honchos

Main challenges are breakdown of supply chain and shrinkage of manpower

Textile Industry, Head honchos

Textile Industry
Head honchos

One thing is certain, online sales will go up

Textile Industry, Head honchos

Textile Industry
Head honchos

Good tidings expected for textile industry

Barry Goodwin,

Barry Goodwin

UK based Amba Projex Ltd designs, manufactures, and installs industrial...

Dr. Vijaya Kumar,

Dr. Vijaya Kumar

Dr MM Kariappa founded the Vogue Institute of Art & Design in 1996....

Neeraj Sharma,

Neeraj Sharma

Headquartered in Surat, Gujarat, Orange O supplies digital textile...

Suresh Patel, Non Woven Federation of India

Suresh Patel
Non Woven Federation of India

The Non Woven Federation of India (NWFI), representing the regional...

Madison Maxey, Loomia

Madison Maxey
Loomia

Loomia designs and manufactures soft circuit systems that can be produced...

Sachin Pendharkar, Dieffenbacher India Pvt Ltd

Sachin Pendharkar
Dieffenbacher India Pvt Ltd

Germany-based Dieffenbacher Group is a producer of high-quality composites ...

Sarah Denise Cordery, Sarah Denise Studio

Sarah Denise Cordery
Sarah Denise Studio

Manchester, England-based Sarah Denise Studio provides relevant fashion...

Ramya Rao & Kavea R Chavali, Kalaneca

Ramya Rao & Kavea R Chavali
Kalaneca

<div>The journey of Kalaneca (kala-Art, Neca- Nikaah) formally began in...

Aprajita Toor, Aprajita Toor

Aprajita Toor
Aprajita Toor

The creations by Aprajita Toor were born out of a deep desire to create...

Press Release

Press Release

Letter to Editor

Letter to Editor

RSS Feed

RSS Feed

Submit your press release on


editorial@fibre2fashion.com

Letter To Editor






(Max. 8000 char.)

Search Companies





SEARCH

Leave your Comments


April 2021

Subscribe today and get the latest update on Textiles, Fashion, Apparel and so on.


Advanced Search