Photographer Shahidul Alam:
“This image, while deeply disturbing, is also hauntingly beautiful. An embrace in death, its tenderness rises above the rubble to touch us where we are most vulnerable. By making it personal, it refuses to let go. This is a photograph that will torment us in our dreams. Quietly it tells us. Never again.”
Better Safety in Bangladesh Could Raise Clothing Prices by About 25 Cents
Olga Khazan, The Atlantic
There was some rare happy news out of Bangladesh today as Reshma Akhter, an 18-year-old seamstress, was dug out and rescued after 17 days of being trapped in the wreckage of a collapsed eight-story garment factory building where 1,045 other people have perished. The Rena Plaza incident is officially the worst disaster in the history of the global clothing industry, and it renewed calls for improved safety protections and building code standards in Bangladesh -- a country that owes much of its recent economic growth largely to low-wage clothing work.
The dangerous conditions have been partly blamed on price-conscious businesses, some of whom go with the cheapest and often least-safe local suppliers at the expense of protections for workers. After a November fire that killed 112 workers, brands like Wal-Mart, Gap, and H&M refused to sign a new union-proposed safety plan, which would have introduced more rigorous safety inspections, saying it was "not financially feasible."..... More here.