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ILO adopts new code of practice with guidance to strengthen health and safety for textile workers
Planet Labor, 13 October 2021, n°12736 - www.planetlabor.com

Avoiding ‘tragedies’ such as the Rana Plaza disaster, which claimed the lives of more than 1,100 textile workers in 2013 when a building housing manufacturing facilities supplying major international retailers collapsed in Bangladesh (c.f. article No. 10636). This is the purpose of the new set of guidelines adopted by the ILO following a meeting of a committee of experts representing governments, and employers and workers organizations, held between 04-08 October 2021. While not legally binding, the code is based on ILO conventions, existing international agreements, and recent local legislative developments. The guide reminds all relevant stakeholders of their responsibilities in terms of monitoring and control, prevention, training and reaction in the face of dangerous situations, and it aims to better protect the 60 million workers in the sector from occupational accidents. The guide is very comprehensive in terms of covering the risks that may be encountered (chemical, building safety, machinery, etc.), and it also aims to guarantee social protection for workers, who are particularly vulnerable to Covid (c.f. article No. 11941). “If everyone commits to translating the provisions in this code into action, we can ensure that no worker – in Bangladesh or any other country – will ever have to risk their life in a garment factory again.” said Kamrul Anam, worker vice-chair of the experts committee meeting.