In Bangladesh, garment workers have the legal right to three months maternity leave with full pay. Yet in over 90 percent of the factories, this right is routinely violated. For the women and their infants, this is literally a matter of life and death. The National Labor Committee launched a campaign to get multinationals to pledge that the factories they subcontract with would honor the law, and 18 major multinational corporations have signed the pledge (with the notable exception of Wal-Mart).
I am sometimes accused of participating in anti-corporate campaigns, but this like all the others isnt anti-corporate; it?s pro-human. Its an attempt to put a human-rights concern into these corporations.
The campaign is still working on other companies, and you can write a letter or a fax to the hold-outs. The NLC is also asking that you pressure Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen, whose brand of clothing is manufactured exclusively for Wal-Mart, sign the pledge.
Kudos to the companies that signed the pledge, including Costco, Disney, Eddie Bauer, Levi-Strauss, Ikea, Gap, Sears, and Reeebok. Heres hoping theyre good to their word!