Monday, October 15, 2007

Worker Dies at Factory Making Gap Clothing

Another story about the disgraceful treatment of employees in the developing world. This time at a factory manufacturing clothes for Gap. From The Guardian:

The clothing giant Gap has ordered one of its overseas suppliers to overhaul its practices after a garment worker in Bangalore, India, collapsed and later died outside the same factory where a young pregnant worker lost her newborn baby six months ago.

It is the third death in the last year at or near the premises of Shalini Creations, a unit of the Texport Overseas group which makes clothes for the US firm.

Local unions told the Guardian that Ms Padmavathi, a 39-year-old factory worker, collapsed near the factory gate at midday on September 18, two-and-a-half hours after she had asked to be allowed leave to go to hospital. They claim she started vomiting at 9.30am and had asked her manager for leave. But, they say, she was not granted immediate leave and was instead verbally abused. When she was eventually granted leave and left the factory, she collapsed near the gate. Passers-by carried her back to the factory, where she was taken to a clinic and then to Victoria hospital, where she died at around 1pm. Results of a postmortem examination have not yet been made public.

You can write to Gap at to pressurise them to take this incident seriously and ensure that their factory ensure fair treatment for all employees.