Companies & trade unions agree to renew Bangladesh Accord for Fire and Building Safety until 2021

The Bangladesh Accord, created after the Rana Plaza disaster in April, 2013, improved worker protections from building collapses, fires, and other worker health and safety issues in Bangladesh's garment industry through independent inspections, public disclosure, trade union agreements, worker empowerment, and democratically elected committees. Companies and trade unions agreed on 29 June 2017 to renew and extend this legally binding agreement to 2021. 

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3 July 2017

Workers Rights Consortium sends memo to universities on renewal of Bangladesh Accord

Author: Scott Nova, Worker Rights Consortium

"WRC Update: Renewal of the Bangladesh Accord", 30 June 2017

Thirteen collegiate licensees currently source from Bangladesh, 10 of which have signed the Accord, and there are 20 factories in the country that produce university logo apparel, 19 of which are covered by the Accord safety inspection and remediation program... To date, 85% of the safety hazards in the collegiate factories have been corrected... There is, however, much work left to do. The 85% figure overstates progress: among the 15% of the renovations still incomplete, there is an over-representation of especially costly items, such as the installation of automatic sprinkler systems and major structural repairs... Despite these challenges, factories producing university logo goods in Bangladesh have collectively completed close to a thousand individual safety renovations and repairs and these buildings are much safer for employees as a result. This is a degree of progress that is a massive advance over previous safety initiatives in Bangladesh, none of which led to meaningful safety improvements in the nation’s garment factories, including the collegiate factories.

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30 June 2017

Investors applaud extension of successful accord for fire and building safety in Bangladesh garment sector

Author: Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsability

The Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility (ICCR) applauds global trade unions and companies that moved to renew the Bangladesh Accord for Fire and Building Safety, a three-year legally-binding agreement that will enter into effect when the current program expires in May, 2018. “Since the Rana Plaza disaster in April, 2013, ICCR has organized a coalition of over 200 institutionalinvestors from 12 countries and representing $4.5 trillion assets under management in support of the Accord,” said ICCR's Senior Program Director for Human Rights, David Schilling. "The Accord's multi-stakeholder model is an unprecedented collaboration between trade unions and apparel companiesand retailers seeking systemic transformation of the Bangladesh garment sector into a safe place twork. As the program has been extremely successful, investors are very eager to see it have theneeded time to fulfill its mandate.”

...Adam Kanzer, Managing Director, Domini Impact Investments [commented,] “We are particularly pleased to see the inclusion of freedom of association and collective bargaining protections, perhaps the most effective safeguard against future Rana Plazas.”

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29 June 2017

KiK signs "Accord on Building and Fire Safety"; new agreement to focus on strengthening labour rights & transparency in the textile chain

Author: KiK

The textil discount KiK has signed the new edition of the "Accord" fire protection and building agreement in Bangladesh. The Westphalian company is therefore one of the first signatories to the new agreement, which will enter into force on 31 May 2018. The aim of the "Bangladesh Accord on Building and Fire Safety" is to continue the measures to improve the protection of buildings and fire in the textile factories of the country after the collapse of Rana Plaza... [T]he next period will focus on strengthening social dialogue and freedom of association... The new agreement expires on 31 May 2021 and may be extended by a maximum of one year. Subsequently, responsibility for the maintenance of safe production conditions should be transferred to a bangladeshan supervisory authority.

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29 June 2017

Press Release: Companies and trade unions agree on Accord on Fire and Building Safety in Bangladesh for second term

Author: The Bangladesh Accord

Several companies have now signed the renewed agreement with IndustriALL Global Union and UNI Global Union. Many more companies are expected to sign in the coming days... The renewed agreement builds on the fundamental elements that have made the Accord successful; including: independent inspections, bi-partite governance, commitment to transparency, provisions to ensure remediation is financially feasible, Safety Committee training and a credible complaints mechanism. “The new agreement demonstrates that international brands and global trade unions recognise the positive impact of the Accord and the need for the Accord to continue its work in Bangladesh to ensure that factories are made safe and stay safe”, says Rob Wayss, Executive Director and Acting Chief Safety Inspector of the Accord... 

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