The Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety was founded by a group of North American apparel companies and retailers and brands who have joined together to develop and launch the Bangladesh Worker Safety Initiative, a binding, five-year undertaking that will be transparent, results-oriented, measurable and verifiable with the intent of improving safety in Bangladeshi ready-made garment (RMG) factories. Collectively, these Alliance members represent the overwhelming majority of North American imports of RMG from Bangladesh, produced at more than 580 factories.
The Alliance provides apparel companies and retailers the unprecedented opportunity to come together and put forward concrete solutions to issues that impact the global apparel and retail industries. The current group of 26 includes the following companies: Ariela and Associates International LLC; Canadian Tire Corporation, Limited; Carter’s Inc.; The Children’s Place Retail Stores Inc.; Costco Wholesale Corporation; Fruit of the Loom, Inc.; Gap Inc.; Giant Tiger; Hudson’s Bay Company; IFG Corp.; Intradeco Apparel; J.C. Penney Company Inc.; The Jones Group Inc.; Jordache Enterprises, Inc.; The Just Group; Kohl’s Department Stores; L. L. Bean Inc.; M. Hidary & Company Inc.; Macy’s; Nordstrom Inc.; Public Clothing Company; Sears Holdings Corporation; Target Corporation; VF Corporation; and Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.; YM Inc.
Supporting associations include: American Apparel & Footwear Association, BRAC, Canadian Apparel Federation, National Retail Federation, Retail Council of Canada, Retail Industry Leaders Association, and United States Association of Importers of Textiles & Apparel. In addition, Li & Fung, a major Hong Kong-based sourcing company which does business with many members of the Alliance, will serve in an advisory capacity.
Alliance Board of Directors
Honorable Ellen O’Kane Tauscher, Board Chair
Ambassador James Moriarty, former U.S. ambassador to Bangladesh
Wilma Wallace, Vice President Global Responsibility, Business & Human Rights
Daniel Duty, Vice President of Global Affairs for Target
Jan Saumweber, Vice President of Ethical Sourcing at Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
Mohammad Atiqul Islam, President of the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturing and Exporters Association (BGMEA)
Muhammad Rumee Ali, Advisor, BRAC, the international NGO founded in Bangladesh
Randy Tucker, global leader of the fire protection and safety team at ccrd, a Houston-based engineering firm
Tom Nelson, Vice President for Global Product Procurement for VFC
Statement of Purpose by Leaders of the Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety
July 10, 2013
As leaders in the apparel industry, we understand the complex challenges that surround the garment industry in Bangladesh. Many of our organizations have worked individually to improve safety and training for garment workers. We also know that the Bangladesh garment industry (which employs millions of workers, roughly 80 percent of whom are women) provides invaluable economic opportunity in the country. The safety record of Bangladeshi factories is unacceptable and requires our collective effort. We can prevent future tragedies by consolidating and amplifying our individual efforts to bring about real and sustained progress. To this end, we are announcing the establishment of the Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety and the launch of the Bangladesh Worker Safety Initiative. These efforts constitute a binding, five-year undertaking that will be transparent, results-oriented, measurable and verifiable...
Creation of the Alliance
The Alliance was organized through the Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC) with discussions convened and chaired by former U.S. Senate Majority Leader George Mitchell (D-ME) and former U.S. Senator Olympia Snowe (R-ME), both of whom have a strong track record of forging consensus-oriented solutions. The collaborative process involved apparel industry companies and stakeholders including: the U.S. and Bangladeshi governments; policymakers; NGOs; members of civil society; and organized labor. The Alliance’s Initiative is built upon the principles of commitment, collaboration, transparency, and accountability, and contains specific and measurable actions across areas essential to improving fire and building safety.