11-Oct-2013 The Textile Clothing and Footwear Union of Australia (TCFUA) has demanded action in response to reports that Target and Woolworths had clothing made by companies sourcing from the Bangladesh factory where a fire has this week claimed 7 workers lives.

TCFUA National Secretary Michele O’Neil said today “How many lives will it take before Australian companies take responsibility for their supply chains? Another 7 workers have died in a fire in the Aswad factory. This follows 1,127 deaths at the Rana Plaza in April and 112 deaths at the Tazreen factory in November last year.

A chilling death toll and we still have Australian companies sitting on their hands.”

Woolworths announced in June their intention to sign the Bangladesh Fire and Building Safety Accord but have failed to do so.

Ms O’Neil went on to say, “Companies must be held to account. Intentions are not good enough.

In addition to Woolworths; Rivers, Just Group, Best & Less, Coles and Pacific Brands have all failed to sign the Accord. These companies must take responsibility, now is the time to act.”

Ninety global companies have now signed onto the Bangladesh Fire and Building Safety Accord and just last week the list of 1,600 factories covering nearly 2 million Bangladesh workers was released.

“Transparency, access to Unions, an enforceable living wage and safety in workplaces are urgently needed in Bangladesh’s garment industry. Injured workers and the families of those killed must be compensated.”

The Bangladesh Garment industry employs over 4 million mainly young women and accounts for over $20 million in exports.

For further information and comment please contact the TCFUA National Secretary, Michele O’Neil on 0419 338 853