Around 80 per cent of garment workers have perceived their workplace as good in terms of the working environment, lighting, emergency exits, washroom and canteen facilities, according to a study conducted by the Asian Center for Development (ACD). The ACD disseminated the study report on Saturday.
The survey was conducted on 1,119 workers and managers from 320 factories. The survey also focused on the workers’ social and economic uplift achieved over the past four decades.The report said around 8.3 per cent of female workers have given birth to a child in a year and they observed that about 3.1 per cent of workers were eligible and have enjoyed maternity leave with pay.
However, the rest were not eligible to enjoy the leave with pay as they did not complete the eligibility criteria to be entitled to such leave.
“Under this situation, we suggest a careful study on the eligibility criteria so that a more humane rule can be set which may be a win-win for both the owners and the workers,” the report said.
On average, each family has more than two earning members. Their average income is between Tk 23,000 to Tk 37,000 per month.
An individual worker earns between Tk 9,500 and 30,000 per month including overtime. On average, a worker works for 8.5 hours of overtime per week, the report added.
Talking about the access to financial services of RMG workers, the study found that nearly 67 per cent of the workers have bank accounts while 31.7 per cent of the workers also have accounts in an agent banking system.The agent/mobile banking system in Bangladesh provides regular banking services to their account holders through private agents who are generally located in convenient store.
Besides, nearly 43 per cent of the workers also have accounts with Bkash, a mobile-based money transfer service.
Nearly 62 per cent of the workers regularly remit money to their home. Of them, 82 per cent use mobile-based banking services and 15 per cent still use the person-to-person transfer of fund, the study mentioned.
About the non-RMG sources of income of workers, the report said that About 57 per cent of the workers do not have any other sources of income, while 43 per cent of the workers have reported that they have income from agricultural activities including poultry, livestock, and fisheries.
Besides, it was found that 65 per cent of the workers have their spouse working in the RMG industry.