Displaced workers will now receive four months wages as compensation

Displaced workers will now receive four months' wages as compensation

The Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety has extended compensation for garment factory workers displaced due to factory remediation from two months' up to four months' wages. 

The collective, which includes 26 companies such as The Children's Place, Macy's, Nordstrom, Gap and Fruit of the Loom, has already sought the closure of five factories following safety concerns.

In May, the Alliance - in a 50/50 partnership with factory owners - began dispersing funds directly to workers displaced as a result of factory closures.

To date, the Alliance has paid wages to more than 1,000 displaced workers from its US$5m Worker Support Fund, which was established with its member brands.

"Ensuring that no garment worker has to put herself at risk to earn a living is our top priority, but we believe protecting and supporting workers must go hand in hand," said Ellen Tauscher, Alliance independent chair and former US Congresswoman.

"We are committed to ensuring as factory safety improvements are made, workers are not expected to pay the price."

The move has been welcomed by Wajedul Islam Khan, general secretary of Bangladesh trade union Kendra. "For structural repairs when necessary, worker's wages should be protected as per law of the land," he said.

"While compensation, whatever the amount, is not more valuable than a life, we applaud the Alliance for taking this critical step to protect and respond to the needs of the workers and their families."