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Dhaka Tribune

ED: A day for honouring the worker

Let us take this opportunity to renew our commitment to workers

Update : 01 May 2021, 06:52 AM

Today is International Workers’ Day, or May Day -- a day on which we remember the importance of workers’ rights and renew our commitment to ensuring that these rights are protected for workers across the nation.

From working hours to fair wages, from working environments to sexual harassment, May Day is an opportunity for Bangladesh to reflect upon the current state of our workers and how their lives can be improved through paying careful attention to every single aspect that affects their experience while trying to earn an income.

This year, due to the coronavirus pandemic, workers across Bangladesh and the world are experiencing a reality unlike one they have faced before, with many fortunate enough to be able to work from home while countless others who have had their livelihoods taken away.

As such, it is especially important now more than ever that we ensure that workers and their rights are protected, so that they do not have to make the rather impossible decision of staying safe or earning a wage that provides for them and their families.

Our history with ensuring security for workers has been a tumultuous one, with the Rana Plaza disaster being the most crucial turning point in recent history, highlighting the grim circumstances many workers are forced to work in.

Since then, we have made tremendous progress, especially in the RMG sector, where we have seen factories implementing higher standards when it comes to creating safe working environments.

But there are many other examples where we continue to fall behind, especially so during a pandemic which has pushed our economy to its limits.

Let us take this opportunity to renew our commitment to the millions of workers who continue to keep our economy afloat and ensure that, no matter the situation, their lives and livelihoods are granted the security they deserve. 

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