Advocacy & Independent Monitoring

Phasing out of the MFA and the elimination of “Quota” system have set in motion for future improvement and structured system for maintaining the compliance standards in the RMG sector of Bangladesh to sustain in the global market. Relocation of the factories from Dhaka city to its outskirts had made space for improvement such as increase of minimum wages, high volume of production, buyer’s physical presence in the country, increased presence of “buying agents”, emergence of new audit and standards and it goes on. As a result, the industry has experienced better business than the quota period. However, despite different initiatives and efforts in RGM sector’s growth, the situation did not improve as expected; rather it deteriorated in many aspects. The relocation of the factories in the outskirts put these factories under the authority of regional authority which lacks manpower, maintenance facilities and invigilation which allowed ill intended garment factories owners’ to overlook the required standard to achieve as well as not following any building codes. Recent tragic accidents not only damaged the industry economically but it cost lives of hundreds of workers; which lead them and their families into disastrous present and uncertain future.  

To meet up with the international standards and ethical sourcing requirements, SCIB works with both management and workers to improve working conditions and protect workers’ rights to enhance adherence to international labor and ethical business standards. These compliant activities of SCIB enhance the credibility and prospects of Bangladesh RMG sector to remain competitive in the global market and continue to expand employment opportunities for workers. Collaborated with Bangladesh Garments Workers Protection Alliance (BGWPA) and other sector players (e.g. various NGO’s, trade unions, workers organization and other concerned organization), SCIB has organized International Solidarity Forum for Garment Workers of LDC and has successfully created an opportunity to enter into Canadian market during the last G-8 meeting held in Canada. The Ministry of Commerce and BGMEA formally have recognized SCIB’s (along with NUK) efforts in this regards and they issued a formal Letter of Appreciation to the organizations. SCIB continued to monitor employment and working conditions for workers in the garments industry; particularly to establish standard levels of compliance with minimum wages enacted and implementation of the Tripartite Agreement of Government, Industry and Trade unions.  Asia Foundation provided support to regular monitoring on employment & workers rights situation in the RMG sector. In addition to these, numbers of retrenched workers indentified, though they are not retrenched due to large number of factory closure, they are retrenchment due to regular reasons caused either by the workers or industries.  “Alternative Job Market Skill” studies were conducted to determine the re-skilling and re-employment of the 3450 Retrenched Garment Workers. SCIB Engage in evidence- based advocacy at the national level which included – hosting round tables, panel discussions, forums, conferences and media campaigns across the country. Over the recent years SCIB has put an effort to support the Bangladesh Garment Workers Protection Alliance so that it becomes the recognized and independent apex body promoting constructive dialogue with Government and the industry.  Now SCIB represent as Member on National Social Compliance Forum under the ministry of Commerce, Bangladesh. The advocacy service of SCIB is a predictor tool of factories sustainable business growth. It measures the commitment level of industry stakeholders; hence a good forecaster of financial growth.