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ILO spreads Covid-19 awareness among RMG workers

2021-07-12, 9:02pm Human rights


The International Labour Organization (ILO) has launched the "Behaviour Change Awareness Campaign" to reduce the Covid-19 risks faced by readymade garment (RMG) workers .

Dhaka, Jul 12 :  The International Labour Organization (ILO) has launched the "Behaviour Change Awareness Campaign" to identify and reduce the Covid-19 risks faced by readymade garment (RMG) workers in their workplaces and communities.
Launched in June in collaboration with Brac, the campaign targeted at least 5,000 households in the RMG-dense areas of Gazipur and Chattogram, covering a population of more than 20,000 people, with at least 60% of the beneficiaries being women.
Funded by Denmark and Sweden, the campaign is a part of the ILO's Social Dialogue and Industrial Relations project's Covid-19 response work, jointly with the Department of Labour, Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association, Bangladesh Employers' Federation, Bangladesh Knitwear Manufacturers and Exporters Association and Workers Resource Centre.
The campaign was developed based on the findings of a pulse survey conducted on 300 apparel workers to identify the gaps in their understanding of Covid-19 risks and preventive measures.
For example, only 38.6% of the respondents recognised Covid-19 as a deadly disease, and over one-third of expectant and new mothers surveyed had the misconception that breastmilk can spread Covid-19. So, the survey findings suggested launching an integrated behaviour change campaign.
With the tagline "Keep Corona away by knowing and complying," the campaign aims to inform RMG workers, their families and communities about Covid-19 symptoms. Special emphasis has been put on Covid-19 health tips for pregnant and breastfeeding mothers.
"As the second wave of Covid-19 continues to impact Bangladesh's apparel industry, personal and occupational protection against the disease has become a key component in every effort to build back better from the pandemic," Tuomo Poutiainen, country director of ILO Bangladesh, said.
"The campaign will complement the ILO's ongoing support to the industry by creating awareness and providing advice to build safe and healthy practices that protect workers and encourage good public behaviour at large," he added.
Featuring a series of awareness-raising videos, posters, leaflets, door-to-door meetings and public service announcements, the campaign will run till the end of October this year.
Other features of the campaign are community-level engagements, distribution of hygiene kits, social media campaigns, and SMS and voice messages that are being disseminated through mobile phones, reports UNB.