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Bangladesh: Clean Clothes Campaign works for Aswad workers compensation

Clean Clothes Campaign works to ensure that those injured after a factory accident get the compensation they deserve. It has called upon brands to calculate and distribute payments contributed by international buyers and based on international standards.

One such tragedy the program is concerned about is the Aswad fire. Four years ago, a fire broke out at Aswad Composite Mills in Bangladesh. At least seven workers were killed and over fifty injured. Even after all this time the families and survivors still remain without full and fair compensation. Brands like H&M, C&A and Primark were sourcing from the factory.

The fire occurred in a factory that was deemed unsafe by inspectors, but which nevertheless continued to operate. It was caused by the explosion of an overheated machine on the ground floor, which set fabrics on fire, trapping workers on an upper floor. Compensation offered by the factory owner fell far below that received by victims of earlier disasters including the Tazreen factory fire and the Rana Plaza collapse.

Brands sourcing from Aswad did provide compensation but what Clean Clothes is emphatic the provision of such payments should not depend on public outrage or media interest but should come spontaneously.