March 11, 2019 YKK Becomes Only Zipper Manufacturer in Bangladesh to be Certified by Alliance

 In December 2018, YKK Bangladesh Pte Ltd became the only zipper manufacturer in Bangladesh to be certified by the Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety.

The Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety ("Alliance"), formed in the immediate aftermath to the Rana Plaza building collapse on April 24, 2013, which killed 1,134 workers and critically injured thousands more, aims to substantially improve worker safety in the ready-made-garment industry by upgrading factories, educating workers and management, empowering workers, and building institutions that can enforce and maintain safe working conditions throughout Bangladesh. Twenty-nine global apparel companies, retailers, and brands are members and have committed to only using certified production facilities.

Alliance conducts factory safety assessments using independent Qualified Assessment Firms (QAF) to ensure that facilities meet the Alliance Fire Safety and Structural Integrity Standard. The Standard was developed collaboratively by a group of technical experts from the Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety and the Bangladesh Accord on Fire and Building Safety (Accord). These assessments provide factory owners with a technical understanding of the fire safety and structural concerns related to their facilities, and prompt action plans that aim to systematically and sustainably improve safety conditions for garment workers. Only facilities that pass these inspections are certified by the Alliance. YKK is the only zipper manufacturer in Bangladesh to be certified by Alliance, and also in compliance with the Accord safety standards.

"With the YKK Group Health and Safety Pledge made in February 1994, we committed to eliminating causes of hazard and harm at all of our workplaces globally. YKK Bangladesh's certification by Alliance is another example of our commitment to worker safety throughout the world. No other zipper or trim manufacturer producing in Bangladesh has made this commitment," said Terry Tsukumo, Vice President of the Global Marketing Group, YKK Corporation.

In the five years since Alliance was formed, 93 percent of remediation across Alliance-affiliated factories is complete, including 90 percent of items most critical to life safety; 428 factories have completed all material items in their initial Corrective Action Plans; nearly 1.6 million workers have been trained to protect themselves in case of a fire emergency; 28,000 security guards have been trained in fire safety and emergency evacuation procedures; more than 1.5 million workers now have access to a 24-hour confidential worker helpline; and 181 worker safety committees have been formed.