Posts Tagged ‘Workers rights’

Rana Plaza victims still awaiting compensation after garment factory disaster

February 27th, 2014 by Kirsten Iler

Following the failed compensation talks in Geneva in September 2013, an agreement has now been reached and a process established to compensate the victims of the Rana Plaza factory disaster in Bangladesh. Very few of the 28 retailers involved, however, have signed the accord or agreed to provide compensation to victims and their families.

One of several Bangladesh garment factory disasters in recent times, the Rana Plaza building collapsed in April 2013, killing or injuring nearly 3,000 workers. Reports have since surfaced that the mainly female workforce were threatened with losing their pay if they refused to work that day, even though the building was already showing cracks. Once inside, the doors were locked and managers instructed workers to continue to work, even as the building began to shake and crumble.

To date, some emergency relief has been provided by a few retailers (notably, Primark and Loblaw, sister companies both controlled by the Westons). However, Rana Plaza victims still await compensation. Workers who survived but are disabled await medical care and rehabilitation. Families who lived off of the meagre wages of workers who died are now in dire straits.


An erosion of labour rights in Canada? It’s starting to look that way

May 31st, 2012 by Priya Sarin

Over the past 12 months, a number of pundits, academics and pollsters have suggested that support for unions and the labour movement is on the decline in Canada. Capitalizing on this perceived shift in attitude, Conservative members of both federal and provincial legislatures have taken the opportunity to advance their own agenda and arguably weaken the bargaining power of Canadian unions relative to employers. Some actions, such as repeated use of back-to-work legislation by Federal Labour Minister Lisa Raitt have left many wondering what the future of collective bargaining will look like in Canada and whether or not workers will have a “right to strike” going forward.