Protests makes a difference


Photo: Garment workers shout slogans as they block a street during a protest demanding higher wages in Gazipur November 13, 2013. CREDIT: REUTERS/STRINGER

Since Rana Plaza the Bangladeshi garment industry has been in the international spotlight. This global attention, coupled with protests by Bangladeshi garment workers appears to have made a difference. 

Effective from Dec 1, the Bangladeshi minimum wage for garment workers will be raised by 77 percent to $68 a month ( 5,300 taka), up from $38. Whilst still the lowest wage for garment workers in the world, it's definitely progress. 

I imagine that factory owners are concerned that Western brands will be put off by higher wages. As Western consumers and business owners it is our responsibility to make it clear that we are willing to pay more to protect the dignity and well-being of those who make our clothes.