Bangladesh: Roundtable highlights how sexual abuse cases in the garment industry are ignored as workers fear termination

Author: Chris Remington, Ecotextile News, Published on: 28 January 2020

"Bangladesh round table explores sexual abuse in RMG sector", 29 January 2020

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A round table convening representatives from various industry NGOs has shed new light on the issue of sexual harassment in Bangladesh’s ready-made garment (RMG) sector.

Organised by Dkaha-based newspaper Prothom Alo, with support from native organisation Manusher Jonno Foundation (MJF) and the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA), the session highlighted how abuse cases are swept under the carpet as workers fear dismissal from their jobs.

Attendees representing the likes of the Bangladesh Labour Foundation, International Labour Organisation, National Human Rights Commission and Awaj Foundation agreed measures must be established to enable victims to speak openly about their experiences in order to hold perpetrators accountable.

...According to local reports, speakers at the event reached the consensus that many women in the country’s RMG sector do not lodge complaints over such cases due to fear of losing their jobs and tarnishing a companies’ image.

...According to findings from an MJF study last year, 23 per cent of female garment workers in Bangladesh have been or are sexually harassed... 79 per cent of both the 425 male and female workers interviewed weren’t aware of the High Court directives regarding the prevention of sexual harassment at work.

 

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