Solidarity Center

Bangladesh Garment Workers Safer after Fire Trainings

  • April 23, 2019
  • Istiak Ahmed Inam

Six years ago, the preventable Rana Plaza collapse in Bangladesh killed 1,134 garment workers in the world’s worst garment industry disaster. Corporate greed, inadequate labor and building code enforcement, and worker exploitation all contributed to the April 24, 2013, tragedy, which spurred efforts to improve factory safety and support workers seeking a voice on the… [READ MORE]

Sri Lanka: Solidarity Center Condemns Despicable Bombings

  • April 22, 2019
  • Solidarity Center

The Solidarity Center is sickened and saddened by the senseless bombings that killed and injured hundreds of people Easter Sunday in Sri Lanka. The organization, which works throughout the country and the world with workers across ethnic and religious lines, deplores the use of violence and offers its deepest condolences to the victims’ families and… [READ MORE]

New Photo Essay: Gaza Agricultural Worker Etaf

While all work has value, not every job is a “good job.” Millions of workers around the world, especially those in the informal sector, cannot enjoy the benefits of their own hard work and often are denied safe working conditions, social protections like health insurance, professional security and union rights and freedom. The Solidarity Center… [READ MORE]

6 Years after Rana Plaza: Bangladesh Set to Backslide

  • April 17, 2019
  • Istiak Ahmed Inam

On a recent Friday, the only day off for Bangladesh garment workers—if they get a day off—I went to visit workers at their homes to better understand how the people who stitch our clothes live their lives. Walking through the puzzling narrow alleys, I entered a tin shed-like building. A corridor tore through the center… [READ MORE]

Brazil Garment Workers’ Union Adopts Women’s Agenda

In a historic achievement, delegates to the 11th Congress of Brazil’s garment worker union federation, CNTRV (National Confederation of Clothing Workers) last week voted for gender parity in leadership and adopted a pro-women’s rights agenda. The union achieved parity not only in the overall number of women and men in leadership, but also in its… [READ MORE]

Ethiopia: Inclusive Labor Movement for Democratic Change

The democratization process that began after Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed took office in Ethiopia one year ago will run aground unless its citizens become increasingly rooted in inclusive civil society institutions, like trade unions, that are capable of overcoming deeply entrenched ethnic, cultural and geographic divisions, said Confederation of Ethiopian Trade Unions (CETU) President Kassahun… [READ MORE]

Sri Lanka Workers Win Policy on Gender-Based Violence

  • April 4, 2019
  • Sean Stephens

Union members in Colombo, Sri Lanka, successfully lobbied for a safer workplace by convincing their company to improve policy guidelines to help prevent gender-based violations in the workplace. The effort was inspired by a Solidarity Center awareness-raising training in December on gender-based violence at work in which four workers from the South Asia Gateway Terminal… [READ MORE]

Teacher Protests for Decent Jobs: Key for All Moroccans

Recent massive teacher protests in Morocco demanding the government create permanent employment contracts is not an issue confined to the education sector—the extent to which decent jobs are available affects the future of the country, say leaders of the Democratic Labor Confederation (CDT). A recent government decree making it no longer possible for workers with… [READ MORE]

Why Amnesty Does Not Solve Gulf Labor, Kefala Issues

In Gulf Cooperation Council countries—Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates—amnesties for workers in irregular status are frequently declared, indicating that irregularity is a common and recurring phenomenon within the governing kefala, or work-sponsorship, system. However, even if implemented perfectly, amnesty is a temporary fix, and effective solutions to reduce the… [READ MORE]

Cornell Recognizes Solidarity Center Leader

The global crackdown on human rights, especially worker rights, coupled with rising inequality are disproportionately affecting marginalized populations around the world. At the same time, the rules are skewed to promote profit, deregulation and the expansion of corporate power over people. The answer, said Solidarity Center Executive Director Shawna Bader-Blau, is a global, social-justice labor… [READ MORE]