Shipbreaking in Bangladesh: the Institute's 2015 Update
December, 02 2015 Share
Fourteen shipbreakers have been killed and scores more severely injured this year.
A worker told us in September:
“Workers still die in the shipbreaking yards. Many workers suffer injuries and some have died… Owners and management are exempt from punishment. They bribe police to settle everything. The owners have never been arrested for killing workers.”
One of them was Mr. Rasel, just 20 years old, who came to Chittagong to work in the shipbreaking yards to support his family. This was his first job and he had worked for only three months before he and two co-workers were killed in a gas explosion on October 13, 2015!
Working conditions are brutal and dangerous. Workers are given no safety gear. Shifts are 12 hours, day and night, seven days a week. Wages are 38 cents an hour. Trade unions are strictly prohibited.
Workers live in primitive conditions, with four workers sharing a room and sleeping on the concrete floor.
There are 12,000 shipbreaking workers in Chittagong. Management provides them with just a cheap pair of gloves to last for a whole month. They don’t provide helmets or goggles or boots or even heavy shirts to protect them from being burned.
For 30 years shipbreaking workers have been maimed and killed, for just pennies an hour.
It doesn’t have to be this way!
Across the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom and Europe—we, the people, have a voice to demand justice and dignity for the shipbreakers.