H&M continues proactive work in Bangladesh garments & textile sector

It is good news for Bangladesh garments & textile sector that H&M continues proactive work in Bangladeshi garments & textile sector

On April 24, two years have passed since the tragic Rana Plaza collapse in Bangladesh. H&M never had any production at any of the factories situated in Rana Plaza, however they continue their long-term commitment to fire and building safety initiatives in Bangladesh, but also to other sustainability issues such as fair living wages.

Before signing the Bangladesh Accord on Fire and Building Safety in May 2013, they had worked pro-actively with these important issues for many years with the independent suppliers that we sourcefrom. By now more than 190 international brands buying from the Bangladeshi textile industry have signed the Accord to work together with the International Labor Organization (ILO), the global union IndustriALL and UNI Global as well as trade unions in Bangladesh. The goal is to  improve and secure the safety of the workers in the garment industry in Bangladesh in a long-term sustainable way.

The Rana Plaza collapse happened due to the infrastructural problems in Bangladesh and is not an issue specifically related to the textile industry. Therefore, many different stakeholders need to work together in order to find long lasting improvements. H&M is continuously looking into how they, together with a joint force, can work for a better fire and building safety in the country.

They also continue their long-term work in Bangladesh and elsewhere towards their vision that all textile workers should be able to live on their wage. Therefore, one of their initiatives is to drive a new strategy for fair living wages. Their main goal is that all our strategic suppliers should have pay structures in place to pay their workers a fair living wage by 2018 at the latest – a wage that is reviewed annually and negotiated with democratically elected union representatives or workers representatives. They also want to contribute to that wages are set by negotiations between the parties in the labour market. Right now they are testing how to best achieve a fair living wage in three model factories, and the first evaluation shows that they are on the right path.

Earlier this year, the H&M Conscious Foundation made a second donation to the victims and the families affected by the tragic Rana Plaza collapse. As H&M never had any production at any of the factories situated in Rana Plaza, the H&M Conscious Foundation based the decision for donation on humanitarian grounds. The donation of USD 100,000 went exclusively to further support the victims and their families through the fund managed by the UN body ILO.

Source: H& M press

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