September 11 marked the 11th anniversary of a fire that killed more than 250 workers at Ali Enterprises, a readymade garment factory in Karachi, Pakistan.
The fire was one of the world’s worst industrial disasters, requiring many years of hard work and campaigning by various groups before workers and their families received proper compensation from a German retailer called KiK, which was the only known buyer from Ali Enterprises.
In September 2016, KiK paid $5.2 million as compensation to the fire victims.
Now, an International Accord is expanding to Pakistan, having already made garment manufacturing safer for millions of Bangladeshi workers over the last ten years.
The accord involves 72 organisations and creates a program for health and safety in Pakistani workplaces that supply garments and textiles to signatories. It's a legally binding agreement involving global unions, IndustriALL, UNI Global Union, and clothing brands, and will be in effect for an interim period of three years starting in 2023.