Starting in mid-December, the Solidarity Center, which works closely with workers and unions, documented instances in which 14 national union federations were either forced by police to shut their offices in Ashulia, Gazipur, and Chittagong, or closed them because of police harassment.
“You don’t leave your human rights in one country when you cross into another. You don’t check your human rights at a border; you keep them with you”—Solidarity Center Executive Director Shawna Bader-Blau in interview with International Catalan Institute for Peace.
The factories reopened in late December, but a “really intense” security presence is everywhere, Jennifer Kuhlman from the Dhaka office of the Solidarity Center, an AFL-CIO allied organization, told me: not just in Ashulia, but also in other industrial areas across the country. She said the arrests, the mass firings and the continuing heavy surveillance… [READ MORE]
Arrests of trade union organizers and workers, along with the suspension by garment manufacturers of as many as 1,500 workers from their jobs, has been a great success for the employers.
A new briefing from the Solidarity Center detailed the intimidation, arrests and firing that followed the garment worker walk-out in December. The Solidarity Center warned that the “broad crackdown on garment workers, union leaders and worker rights activists in Bangladesh marks a troubling escalation of workers to silence garment workers.”