NATIONAL GARMENT WORKERS FEDERATION (NGWF), BANGLADESH


Brief  History
The National Garment Workers Federation (NGWF) is a countrywide trade union federation of garment workers in Bangladesh. NGWF is the biggest and strongest federation in the garment sector of the country. It was founded in 1984. Its central office is situated in Dhaka metropolitan city. There are 8  branch offices of NGWF in 8 garments industrial zones: - Chittagong, Savar, Ashulia, Mirpur, Gazipur, Konabari, Kashimpur and Narayangonj. 41 registered factory unions are affiliated with the NGWF. The Federation also have 1,232 factory committee. Total membership of the federation (till August 2016) is 68,525. Of them 40,100 are women & 28,425 men. of which 24,746 are women and 18,655 men. There are 24 full-time organizers of the NGWF. The NGWF has a 30-member central executives committee (CEC) of which 17 are women. The Central Executive Committee is elected by the National Council (Congress) biannually. Main financial source of the federation is subscription of its members. Many of its activities also done in partnership with democratic trade unions, woman organizations, NGOs and development organizations.
NGWF is the initiator and one of the members of Bangladesh Garment Workers Unity Council (an umbrella organization of 10 garment workers federation). NGWF is also one of the member organizations of the conciliation cum arbitration committee (a joint body of 8 registered garment workers federations and BGMEA for conciliation and resolution of disputes). NGWF is affiliated with IndustriAll (former ITGLWF) and TWARO. NGWF is being involved with all the important struggles of garment workers, including several strikes since 1984, of Bangladesh.
NGWF (January to August 6, 2013) some recent achievements, such as:
NGWF played important role in realizing compensation for dead workers (those could be identified) of Tazreen Fashion fire. Each of the family of 103 workers received TK. 700,000 (US$ 8,871.98) and realizing 3-month wages for all workers. The bodies of severely burnt (beyond recognition) workers are now under DNA investigation so that their families could get compensation after completion of the investigation.
Smart Export Garment Ltd. fire: NGWF and BNC (joint committee of IndustriAll affiliates) together could be able to realize compensation under the `loss of earnings’ definition for all the 8 dead workers. Each of the injured workers of Smart Export Garment fire got Taka 500,000 (US$ 6,337) as compensation. And each of the workers (those not injured) got Taka 15,000 (US$ 190.11) as compensation.
NGWF (January to June, 2013) total new membership – 5,143 (Female = 2,797 and Male = 2,346)
NGWF (January to August, 2013) total new registered basic unions is 7.


Capacity Building:
NGWF Organized 06 General membership training with a total participants of 214 (Female-109, Male-105).
02 Women Leadership trainings with total participants of 64.
NGWF organized different type of mobilization-events such as Human chains, rallies, procession, sit-in strike and hunger strike to realize workers’ demands and create public opinion.
NGWF gave some token financial support to the 870 Tarzeen Fashion and Rana Plaza victim garment workers (dead and injured workers).
Networking and round-table discussions with trade unions and labour and textile NGOs.
NGWF organized rally and procession on International Women Day, 8 March 2013, and also published 8000 posters and 30,000 leaflets that were distributed to the garment factory, workers and other places demanding removal of legal discrimination between public and private sectors women workers regarding Maternity leave.
NGWF organized a big rally followed by a procession on May Day, May 1, 2013, and also published 8000 copies of poster for demanding for safe workplace, free trade union rights and living wages in RMG sector.   
13 factory-disputes (involving total 8382 workers (Female 5163, Male-2967) were resolved through NGWF in 2013. The workers received total Taka 14,060,800/-(US$ 1,78,210.39)
NGWF provided Legal-aid support to workers on 1,380 separate incidents & cases from January to June 2013. 

NGWF – 22-08-2013
KAMAL SHAHRIAR
KAMAL SHAHRIAR

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