Around 120 garment workers burnt to death in the Tazreen factory fire on 24 November 2012.

Three years after Tazreen fire, brands must pay compensation

19.11.2015

On the third anniversary of the Tazreen factory fire in Bangladesh, IndustriALL Global Union is calling on international brands that sourced from the garment factory to pay into the fund for victims. 

On 24 November 2012, approximately 120 garment workers burnt to death and 300 more were badly injured in the fire. Exits were locked and more than 100 workers were sustained serious injuries as a result of jumping for their lives from the upper floors of the factory building.

The anniversary falls just as Walmart, Tazreen’s biggest customer, can expect massive sales during Thanksgiving week. The U.S. brand still refuses to pay compensation to victims’ families and the injured.

One year ago, IndustriALL Global Union together with the Clean Clothes Campaign, C&A and the C&A Foundation signed an agreement, brokered by the International Labour Organization, to set up the Tazreen Claims Administration Trust to give compensation to victims from a dedicated Fund.

The Trust, which is based on the successful claims procedure used for thousands of Rana Plaza victims, will make payments to cover loss of income and medical treatment.

Brands and retailers with revenue over US$1 billion are being asked to pay a minimum of US$100,000 into the Fund. 

Only C&ALi & Fung (which sourced for Sean John’s Enyce brand) and discount German retailer KiK have paid so far.

Other brands that sourced from Tazreen and have not paid are U.S. brands Disney, Sears, Dickies and Delta ApparelEdinburgh Woolen Mill (UK); Karl Rieker (Germany); Piazza Italia (Italy); and Teddy Smith (France).

Monika Kemperle, IndustriALL’s assistant general secretary, said:

“The Tazreen Claims Administration Trust provides real hope to victims who can expect to start receiving payments in the coming months. While we thank the brands that have already paid, we are completely dismayed that Tazreen’s biggest customer, Walmart, won’t fork out after three long years.

“Once again, Walmart is ignoring its responsibilities and failing victims.”

KiK is the only brand to be involved in all three of the ‘big three’ tragedies to hit the garment industry in recent history – TazreenRana Plaza also in Bangladesh, and the 2012 Ali Enterprises factory fire in Pakistan which killed 254 people.

While the processes to pay compensation to the victims of Rana Plaza and Tazreen are underway, the Ali Enterprise case has yet to be properly addressed.

Kemperle added:

“There is no reason why a model similar to the compensation process used for Rana Plaza and now Tazreen, cannot be applied to the victims of the Ali Enterprises fire. Again, appalling safety standards and locked exists led to a terrible loss of life. It’s about time KiK delivers on its promise to pay long-term compensation to victims.”

Ends

For more information on the Tazreen Claims Administration Trust go to 

www.tazreenclaimstrust.org

Click here for more information on the Ali Enterprises fire. 

For further information, please contact:

Leonie Guguen, Communications Officer, IndustriALL Global Union

e: [email protected] 

t: +4179 137 5436