Verbal harassment is still the top complaint lodged by the workers in the country’s readymade garment (RMG) sector, the latest Center for Policy Dialogue (CPD) report has shown.
According to the survey findings, about 82.6 per cent of complaints, reported by the surveyed workers, are related to verbal harassment, followed by 13.04 per cent physical and 7.25 per cent sexual ones.
The survey, titled ‘State of the UNGPs in the RMG Sector of Bangladesh’, was revealed at a virtual dialogue, organised by CPD on Saturday.
The majority of workers also complained about inadequate compliance with labour act and labour rules in laying off workers, the report showed.
It also revealed that despite having the presence of a grievance system at the factory level, the majority of the surveyed workers, who are aware of such mechanism, do not use the instrument regularly to address their complaints.
“Very few workers use the mechanism – only 12.7 per cent of the workers claimed using the grievance system,” the report said.
Some 21.74 per cent complaints are related to extra work, 26.09 per cent problems with salary or overtime payment, while 10.14 per cent is about harassment from co-workers.
In most cases, factory management reach a solution through negotiation with 86.03 per cent verbal warnings, the report disclosed.
In the case of retrenchment, only 6.3 per cent of workers mentioned that their factories provided three months' notice before laying off workers, according to the report.
The nationally representative enterprise-level survey was undertaken with a sample of 603 enterprises from Dhaka, Gazipur, Narayanganj and Chattogram.
A total of 606 workers across 200 factories were covered in the survey.
The study also identified areas of strengths and weaknesses in United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs) practices and put forward a set of suggestions.