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RMG injury scheme commuting coverage.

Published: May 21, 2024

The Governance Board of the Employment Injury Scheme (EIS) Pilot approved the inclusion of commuting accidents as industrial accidents eligible for compensation payout from 1st July 2024, following the decision made by the International Labour Organization (ILO). The meeting was chaired by Md Mahbub Hossain, secretary of the Ministry of Labour and Employment (MoLE), who emphasized the importance of ensuring protection for industries and workers in Bangladesh.
The EIS Pilot Governance Board, made up of member government agencies, workers’ organizations, and employers’ organizations, unanimously supported a decision. Technical experts from the ILO provided important insights into the expansion, including the need to treat accidents involving commuters as workplace accidents but to keep separate records due to them happening outside of factories.

The ILO highlighted the financial sustainability of accident coverage under the EIS Pilot in Bangladesh. Workers’ representatives expressed support for the initiative, particularly emphasizing the importance of covering commuting accidents in the relatively safe RMG sector. They discussed aligning the EIS with Article 7 of the ILO C-121, which requires defining industrial accidents and commuting accidents as industrial accidents. This move brings the Bangladesh EIS closer to meeting international requirements.

The EIS Pilot includes commuting accidents within its coverage, providing compensation for incidents that occur during an employee’s direct route between work and home. Two out of three suggested vulnerabilities are now addressed by the pilot, with occupational diseases remaining uncovered. Efforts to enhance national occupational disease data are underway. Tuomo Poutiainen, ILO’s Country Director for Bangladesh, notes that the EIS Pilot has been compensating injured workers and dependents of deceased workers in the ready-made garments sector since June 21, 2022. The initiative aims to improve worker protection and industrial relations impacted by work-related accidents.

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