Various labour rights groups in Bangladesh on 19 April (Monday) called upon the garment factory owners as well as the Government to arrange transportation for the garment workers.
It may be mentioned that even as Bangladesh is undergoing a 7-day strict lockdown on account of COVID-19, which has, reportedly, been extended further by another seven days now, export-oriented industries including the readymade garment factories have been allowed to operate.
But due to lack of public transports, the garment workers are allegedly facing challenges in reaching their respective workplaces.
The rights groups — the Sommilito Garments Sramik Federation (SGSF) and the Bangladesh Garment Workers’ Solidarity (BGWS) — have asked factory owners not to retrench any garment worker while also ensure their health and safety as well.
These two entities have separately raised six-point demand while also demanding special incentive for the garment workers as they are working risking their life amidst the pandemic for the sake of the economy of the country.
The SGSF President Nazma Akter, in a letter written to the to the Labour Secretary, reportedly, alleged that although the Government instructed factory owners to arrange transport for the workers, most have failed to comply with the directive and as a result, workers are at risk of getting infected even as BGWS President Taslima Akter on her part, reportedly, also demanded that factory authorities ensure full wages and festival allowances for workers and do not terminate any worker amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.