The IndustriALL Bangladesh Council (IBC) on Sunday demanded six months' fully paid maternity leave for workers at readymade garment (RMG) factories.
A number of demands were raised at a discussion marking the International Women's Day on 'ILO convention-190 ratification' at Dhaka Reporters Unity (DRU).
Other demands include – ensuring safe working environment; ratifying ILO Convention 190; ensuring 40 percent representation of women at every level of trade union; and stopping sexual harassment of female workers.
Besides, ensuring social security including providing fund and gratuity for women workers, not allowing any female worker to work after 10pm as per government directives; setting up childcare centre at every factory and providing balanced food and treatment for children, ensuring equal rights; arranging scholarships for meritorious students of working women; formation of democratic trade unions in accordance with ILO Conventions 87 and 98 including ensuring freedom of association in all factories.
According to the written statement, women working in RMG factories get four months' maternity leave, while women working at government institutions get six months.
"The women workers were threatened with dismissal when the news of pregnancy reached their company owners. Pregnant workers are sacked without any financial benefits," it claimed.
IBC Women Committee's President Hasina Akter presided over the function while its General Secretary Salma Akter and central committee General Secretary Kamrul Hasan, among others, among others were present at the event.