Fire kills eight young women

Smart Export Garment in Dhaka is yet another site in Bangladesh where a deadly fire took place in 2013. It took the life of eight young women, and severely injured 25 others. Among the global brands with production at the factory were Inditex, New Look, KiK, Scott & Fox and Solo Invest.

The fire at Smart Export came just two months after the disastrous fire at Tazreen, also in Bangladesh, in late 2012. After the tragedy at Smart Export Garment in January 2013, the Clean Clothes Campaign (CCC) immediately started following up with companies buying from the factory. CCC demanded that these French, Spanish and British buyers shoulder their responsibilities and ensure compensation for the victims and their families.

Inditex carried out an internal investigation and reported back to CCC that they were not aware of the production for Inditex at Smart Export.

This took place through unauthorised sub-contracting by their contracting factory. The buyer New Look also reported that they were not aware of production at the Smart Export factory.

Subsequently, in the last three months of 2013, Inditex and New Look finalised the compensation process and the pending payments to the victims of the fire, alongside all the other workers, who received three months salary.

KiK, Scott & Fox and Solo Invest have not yet made any payment to the workers. They have therefore failed to commit to the compensation process that has been coordinated with the local unions. CCC is discussing follow-up actions with its local partners.


See also:

CCC calls upon Solo Invest, KiK and Scott & Fox to contribute to compensation for SMART fire victims

Labor rights groups implore apparel brands to sign fire safety agreement

Reuters - Bangladesh arrests factory owners over allegations of negligence