Thursday, April 25, 2013

  • Over 200 Killed in Bangladesh Factory Collapse After Workers Forced to Ignore Building’s Dangers

    Bangladesh_factory

    The death toll in Bangladesh has topped 200 after an eight-story garment factory building collapsed with thousands of workers inside. More than 1,000 people were injured, and an unknown number of workers are still trapped in the wreckage. Cracks had been found in the building, but workers say the factory owners forced them to go to work anyway. Protests broke out in the Bangladeshi capital of Dhaka today as angry workers blocked key highways, marched on several factories, and rallied outside the headquarters of Bangladesh’s main manufacturers group. The disaster comes exactly five months after a massive fire killed at least 112 garment workers at Bangladesh’s Tazreen factory, which made clothing sold by Wal-Mart, among other companies. We’re joined by two guests: Kalpona Akter, executive director of the Bangladesh Center for Worker Solidarity, and Charlie Kernaghan, director of the Institute for Global Labour and Human Rights.

  • Survivor of Bangladesh’s Tazreen Factory Fire Urges U.S. Retailers to Stop Blocking Worker Safety

    Bangladesh-survivor

    This week’s Bangladeshi factory disaster comes five months after a massive fire killed at least 112 garment workers at Bangladesh’s Tazreen factory, which made clothing sold by Wal-Mart, among other companies. Earlier this month, Wal-Mart refused to compensate victims and their families, even though it was apparently the factory’s largest buyer. We’re joined by Sumi Abedin, a worker who survived the Tazreen fire by jumping from the factory’s third story, breaking both her arm and foot in the process. She is currently touring the United States to call on retailers like Wal-Mart, The Gap and Disney to take the lead on improving working conditions in Bangladesh. We also speak with Kalpona Akter of the Bangladesh Center for Worker Solidarity and Charlie Kernaghan of the Institute for Global Labour and Human Rights.

  • Yemeni Activist Farea al-Muslimi Urges U.S. to Stop the Drone War on His Country

    Farea_al-muslimi-1

    Yemeni activist and journalist Farea al-Muslimi delivered a moving plea before a Senate hearing this week for an end to U.S. drone strikes inside his country. Speaking at the first-ever public congressional hearing on Obama’s secret drone and targeted killing program, al-Muslimi offered a rare first-hand account of the suffering that drone warfare wreaks on ordinary people’s lives. His family’s village of Wessab was hit by a U.S. drone strike last week, leaving five people dead. Educated in the United States as a teenager, al-Muslimi says the drone attacks are turning Yemenis against the country that embraced him.