BBC World Service

Six months after factory collapse in Bangladesh

Lizzie O'Leary Oct 22, 2013
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BBC World Service

Six months after factory collapse in Bangladesh

Lizzie O'Leary Oct 22, 2013
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This week marks the six-month anniversary of the Rana Plaza garment factory collapse in Bangladesh. The destruction left more than 1,100 dead.

The disaster prompted calls for companies to change the way they operate in Bangladesh and to know more about their subcontractors. Many people in Bangladesh want to see a change to building code and safety regulations.

The BBC’s Ed Butler says that since the collapse, not much has changed in terms of substantial reform and compensation. Twenty-nine companies were involved in the factory, but only one has paid compensation to victims, which has left many people upset. And besides safety and compensation, workers are upset about the minimum wage.

“The minimum wage for Bangladeshi garment workers is something like $1.50 a day,” he says. “That’s just about the lowest in the world.”

Butler says the government has promised to raise that minimum wage. And other international companies say they have been developing new safety initiatives for the factories. But many aren’t that optimistic, saying the progress has been too slow and uncertain to feel assured.

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