Today 24 April is the 7th anniversary of the Rana Plaza Garment Factory disaster.
The artwork and poem Behind Closed Doors was prepared for the Modern Art Projects Blue Mountains (MAPBM) exhibition Sewn Up! which has been impacted by Covid-19 restrictions. The exhibition is now a incidental installation at the Lyttleton Stores, Lawson. In the post Covid world it is hoped that the exhibition will be rehung and the intended educational programs will be able to take place.
The Rana Plaza collapse on 24 April 2013 cost 1,132 women their lives and injured thousands of people, mainly women, all of whom were ordered to attend work in an obviously unsafe structure. The incident prompted investigations into workplace safety and the role of just-in-time supply chains, resulting in Modern Slavery legislation being introduced in the United Kingdom in 2015 and in Australia in 2019. However, transparency of end-to-end supply chains is still opaque. Oxfam is currently working to drum up support for vulnerable workers in the garment industry to prevent exploitation and underpayment and are currently calling for public support.
Recently, during the Covid-19 crisis, many US and European firms have cancelled orders from Dhaka or have not paid for work done already. All this adds further stress and job insecurity for the most vulnerable workers.
Click on the image below to open the poem which is hanging behind the sales counter at Lyttleton Stores until the end of April 2020.
Rochford Street Review is free to browse and read at your pleasure. As an independent journal, which doesn’t receive funding from any government agency or institution, we rely on the generosity of our readers to be able to pay our writers and to meet our ongoing costs.
If you are in a position to do so please consider “paying’ the suggested sale price of Aust$10 for Issue 28. You will contributing to the future of Rochford Street Review and ensuring that our writers get at least a small contribution for their work.