Producer/Host: Meredith DeFrancesco
Today we talk with Bangladeshi labor activist Kalpona Akter, who along with two of her colleagues were arrested last summer following their involvement in a movement to raise the minimum wage for garment workers in Bangladesh. The garment factory managers who have leveled charges against the three activists are major suppliers to Walmart.
Kalpona Akter, Babul Akter and Aminul Islam, all from the Bangladesh Center for Worker Solidarity, could face long prison terms, or even the death penalty, for some of the charges. A major international campaign has targeted Walmart to take responsibility for the labor conditions in the factories they outsource to, and to pressure the factory owners to drop charges against the activists advocating for better working conditions in these factories.
We also speak with Bjorn Skorpen Claeson, director of Sweatfree Communities, a campaign on the International Labor Rights Forum. www.sweatfree.org. www.change.org
Walmart declined an interview.