Human rights awareness program for garments workers

16 Sep 2013

imageThe campaign was focused on child marriage and birth registration issue. Photo: UNDP Bangladesh.
The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), Bangladesh and Marks and Spencer jointly organized a human rights awareness campaign for garment workers in ready-made garment factories. As a pilot effort, 4 cultural shows were organized from 16 to 19 September, 2013 in Interstoff and Epyllion Style factories in Gazipur. 3000 garment workers attended the campaign. 

The objective of the program was to raise awareness of ready-made garment workers on child marriage and birth registration issues while also teaching them NHRC. The broader objective of the initiative was to develop partnership with the private sector to improve the human rights awareness of disadvantaged people. The Bangladesh National Human Rights Commission Capacity Development Project is assisting NHRC in building partnerships to implement the programme.

At the opening of the programme, Mr. Reazuddin Al Mamun, Managing Director of Epyllion Style Ltd congratulated the initiative of NHRC, UNDP and Marks and Spencer to raise the awareness of the ready-made garment workers. He remarked that it’s a unique initiative where we sit together and discuss rights issues.

Mr. Mizanur Rahman, Senior Compliance Manager of Marks and Spencer highlighted the role of ready-made garments factories owners in raising awareness of the workers on different social issues. He mentioned that it’s a pilot effort and added that they wanted to work together in future. Khan Md. Rabiul Alam, Advocacy and Communication Analyst, BHNRC-CDP, briefly described the background and objectives of the program.

The campaign was focused on child marriage and birth registration issue. Rupantar- a Khulan based organization conducted the campaign through using Pot Song, Gamvira and Drama.

After the performance, Ms. Anjuman Ara, a local ward counselor of the Gazipur City Corporation expressed her happiness that such programmes were taking place. She asked all of the workers to feel free to visit her office to get a birth registration certificate. She mentioned that birth registration is free of cost and guarantees the rights of one’s children.