Bangladesh: Brands commit to new garment factory safety scheme Nirapon following winding down of Alliance

Author: Hannah Abdulla, Just Style, Published on: 26 March 2019

"Alliance brands back new Bangladesh factory scheme", 25 March 2019

A group of former members of the now-defunct Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety has teamed up with several other brands to launch Nirapon, a voluntary programme tasked with overseeing the ongoing safety, training and helpline efforts in Bangladesh ready-made garment factories.

Over 20 brands and retailers are backing the new organisation, including The Children's Place, Walmart, VF Corp, Nordstrom, Target, Macy's, JC Penney, Gap Inc, Abercrombie & Fitch, and Li & Fung.

The new locally managed body will monitor 600 factories from which its member brands source to verify that they continue to meet the National Action Plan's standards for physical safety... Based in Dhaka...[i]ts formation follows the wind-down of the buyer-backed Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety at the end of 2018.

Factories will work directly with vetted Qualified Assessment Firms... who will carry out routine inspections, while the factories and their consultants will perform routine maintenance and any needed remediation...

However, Nirapon is not a regulatory agency and will not publicly identify factories that are not meeting performance standards or recommend factories for closure... it will be up to Nirapon member-buyers to decide on how best to address issues with their suppliers... Nirapon will report engineering, safety and training updates to the member brands along with the assessment and factory status...

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Related companies: Abercrombie & Fitch Children's Place Gap J.C. Penney Li & Fung Macy's Nordstrom Target VF Corp Walmart