* $40 million fund sought for injured, families of dead
* Only five brands commit to pay up so far
* Bangladesh is second biggest garment producer after China
BERLIN, Feb 24 Campaigners are urging all 27
clothing brands linked to a collapsed Bangladeshi factory that
killed more than 1,100 people to pay into a compensation fund by
the anniversary of the disaster in April.
The disaster has galvanised most of the clothing industry's
big names to work together to improve safety standards but many
brands have shunned a fund that is trying to raise $40 million
for families of the dead and over 2,000 injured.
The Clean Clothes Campaign (CCC), an Amsterdam-based group
lobbying for better conditions in the garment industry, on
Monday demanded that all 27 brands linked to factories in the
Rana Plaza complex should contribute by the first anniversary of
"Compensation efforts to date have been completely
haphazard, unequal, unpredictable and non-transparent, and have
left large groups of victims with nothing," Ineke Zeldenrust of
the CCC said in a statement.
Discount fashion retailer Primark, owned by Associated
British Foods, and Canadian grocer Loblaw have
already paid short-term support to Rana Plaza workers, but have
expressed frustration at slow progress in setting up a fund.
The CCC said the only brands to have committed to pay into
the fund so far are Loblaw, Mascot of Denmark and Spanish chains
El Corte Ingles, Mango and Zara-owner Inditex.
About 3.6 million of Bangladesh's 155 million people work in
the clothing industry, making it the world's second-largest
garments exporter behind China. Around 60 percent of garment
exports go to Europe and 23 percent to the United States.
Some of the brands supplied from Rana Plaza have said they
will not contribute as their production was outsourced to the
factory without their knowledge, or ended some time ago, while
others say they prefer to pursue their own compensation plans.
IndustriALL, a global trade union that has helped coordinate
the compensation fund to be run by the International Labour
Organisation (ILO), called on consumers to bombard their
favourite brands with messages to get more to pay up.
"It is time to name, shame and campaign. On April 24, one
year will have passed since the horror of Rana Plaza. No more
excuses," IndustriALL assistant general secretary Monika
Kemperle said in a statement.