Under a partnership with the U.K. Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Office, GFEMS funded three individual interventions, led by implementing partners ELEVATE, aimed at disrupting the prevalence of forced labor in India and Bangladesh. For each of the three interventions, GFEMS partnered with Athena-ITAD to conduct “First-Look” case studies. These case studies represent a snapshot of the current status of the project and assesses project progress in alignment with the Theory of Change. It also documents the progress made, if any, at the preliminary stages of the project.
Findings suggest that implementation is on track for the first phase of the project, despite delays caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Given that it is still early in the project implementation, the bulk of evidence will be assessed in the ‘Second Look’ case study which will offer a deeper, more comprehensive overview of the intervention and its impact.
Case Study 1: LaborLink
Sector: Apparel, Ready-made Garments
Project Description: GFEMS funded ELEVATE to increase transparency in the ready-made garment sector in Bangladesh by deploying its proven Laborlink worker survey tool to collect data on working conditions and forced labour risks faced by workers in informal factories. Building on the successful deployment of this tool in formal factories, ELEVATE has customized this anonymous and mobile-based worker survey tool for deployment in informal garments factories.
Deployment was focused in Keraniganj and Narayanganj, two apparel production hubs dense with informal factories, typically orienting production for the domestic apparel market. The Laborlink identifies child labor and workers at risk of forced labor, which ELEVATE referral operators (Amader Kotha Helpline) follow-up with. If this tool is found to be applicable, informal RMG workers in Bangladesh – currently hidden from view – will have an anonymous tool to give direct feedback on exploitive working conditions, and the project will connect them to pertinent information and resources required to remove them from situations of forced and child labour.
To see findings of our “First Look” Case Study, download the report: