Financial inclusion and access to healthcare are some of the most critical issues facing the world today. Both of these are evident in the Ready Made Garment (RMG) industry in Bangladesh – the country’s single biggest contributor to its GDP.
This industry has been economically empowering for many women by providing stable employment, some measure of social security and social acceptability.
be more empowered than other women, they are also struggling: 87 percent suffer from ailments and diseases, including malnutrition and anemia, poor hygiene, inadequate pre-and post-natal care, and exposure to other infections and illness.
Occupational health and safety (OHS) standards are not well protected or managed. Bangladeshi law stipulates that RMG factories must have an on-site clinic with one or more full-time nurse. But these clinics don’t grow when the factory’s staff grows, and many of them are under-used and under-managed – which means the women who are enabling the rapid growth of the country’s GDP do not have the healthcare services they need.
When Takeda learned about HERhealth, a program under HERproject, it inspired us to think about the need for a better health system in RMG factories; here, a partnership was born.