Clothing giants urged to help Rana Plaza victims

Relatives mourn at the Rana Plaza site in Bangladesh

The European Parliament adopted a strongly worded resolution to mark the Second Anniversary of the Rana Plaza building collapse in Bangladesh, which caused the the death of over 1100 people and left some 2500 people injured.

Relatives mourn at the Rana Plaza  site in Bangladesh
Relatives mourn at the Rana Plaza site in Bangladesh

The Rana Plaza building collapse was Bangladesh’s worst-ever industrial disaster and the deadliest accidental structural failure in modern history. While 27 million dollars has now been donated to the Fund set up to compensate the victims of the disaster and their families, around 3 million remains outstanding.

Liberal Democrat MEP Catherine Bearder, who led negotiations on the resolution for the Liberals and Democrats in the European Parliament, commented:

“It’s disgraceful that the fund set up to help compensate the victims of the Rana Plaza disaster continues to be short-changed by some of the wealthiest retailers in Europe.

“Many survivors are living in poverty and waiting for final installments to pay medical bills, yet many brands have made only disappointing contributions.

“It’s time for all those clothing retailers linked to the disaster to cough up, which is why we have named and shamed them today.

“We also need to do more to help address the underlying challenges of our fast-fashion industry, and this means shoppers should be prepared to pay fair prices and demand supply-chain responsibility.”

Rana Plaza  site in Bangladesh
Rana Plaza site in Bangladesh

The European Parliament resolution said:: “EU denounces that about one-third of the companies that are deemed to have links to the factory complex, like Adler Modemarkte, Ascena Retail, Carrefour, Grabalok, J.C. Penney, Manifattura Corona, NKD, PWT or YesZee, have yet to pay into the Trust Fund; deeply regrets that several companies have made insufficient donations based on their ability to pay and their involvement in Rana Plaza and that many companies have refused to disclose the amount of their contribution to the Fund.”

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