Global Month of Solidarity: Press Release by GWTUC
Dragon Group must immediately compensate the workers with their owed wages, service benefits, and provident fund amounts.
Today, the workers of Dragon Group’s factories, Dragon Sweater and Imperial Sweater held a press conference to announce their plans to press home their demands for their owed wages, service benefits and provident fund amounts. The two factories are more than 25 years old and during this duration the owners have deprived almost 6,000 workers, some of whom have been working for over two decades, of their legally owed benefits.
The owners have exploited the instability of the COVID 19 Pandemic to terminate the experienced workers without their legally owed benefits. Even as the government set aside funds for the payment of workers’ wages, the Dragon owners have only paid 65% of the wages for April, May and June. The politically influential owner and ex-president of the BGMEA, the conglomerate of garment owners in Bangladesh, Golam Mustafa Quddus has used the disruption and suffering of the Pandemic to terminate the workers illegally without any legal repercussions.
The workers have been demonstrating for the past few months. They have held protests in front of the factory and laid siege to the Labor Ministry. Even as the government sponsored Crisis Management Committee have invited the workers and owners for meetings, on each occasion the government has refused to hold the owners accountable for the non-payment of workers’ benefits.
With this mind, we hereby are announcing our next course of action. From 31st August, we will begin our ‘Occupation of the Labor Ministry.’ In this continuous demonstration, we hope and expect that conscientious working class people will express their solidarity with our demands. Alongside the occupation, we further have plans to lay siege to the Prime Ministers’ Office, The BGMEA Office and the residence of the owners of Dragon Group in support of our demands.
Report on the press conference was also published by NewAgeBd.net.