The Herald Bulletin

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July 19, 2013

US urges Bangladesh to protect workers

WASHINGTON — The U.S. government is urging Bangladesh to take measures to protect workers' rights and improve factory conditions if it wants to have trade benefits restored.

The Obama administration suspended Bangladesh's preferential trade arrangements on June 27 to press the country to address worker safety. A building collapse in April killed 1,127 workers in the deadliest incident in the history of the global garment industry. The collapse came just months after 112 Bangladesh workers died in a garment factory fire.

The State Department made public the changes it's urging Bangladesh to adopt, in a statement released Friday.

The measures include increasing the number of labor, fire and building inspectors and modifying the labor laws related to collective bargaining and discrimination against union members.

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