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Choices

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Turns out that Bangladeshi workers do make choices for themselves outside of theoretical “choices” about working dangerous jobs. In fact, they choose to engage in massive protests after over 250 deaths in the collapsed building this week.

Police inspector Kamrul Islam said the workers had attacked several factories whose bosses had refused to give employees the day off.

“They were protesting the deaths of the workers in Savar,” he said, referring to the town outside Dhaka where Wednesday’s collapse of an eight-storey building housing five garment factories took place, injuring more than 1,000 people.

“Many wanted to donate blood to their fellow workers,” he added.

Some 1,500 workers marched to the Dhaka headquarters of the main manufacturers association, demanding the owners of the collapsed factories be punished.

“The owners must be hanged,” one protester cried, as others tried to lay seige to the headquarters.

Some workers smashed windows and vehicles before they were chased away by police, Wahidul Islam, a deputy commissioner of Dhaka police, told AFP.

I believe the academic term for this is “worker agency.” This is one way workers seek to improve their lives. They choose not to die on the job.

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