Speakers at a meeting called for taking steps to ensure health protection of tannery workers in the interest of increased productivity in the sector.
If they are healthy, their productivity will increase, flourishing the sector, they said addressing a consultation meeting titled 'What to do to ensure health protection of tannery workers' at the union office in leather industrial state of Savar.
Tannery Workers Union and Solidarity Center-Bangladesh Office jointly organized the meeting on Sunday afternoon.
Md. Mizanur Rahman, Senior Vice Chairman of Bangladesh Tanners Association, attended as the chief guest in the meeting held under the chairmanship and co-ordination of Tannery Workers Union President Abul Kalam Azad.
Belal Ahmed, the former head of community medicine department of Dhaka National Medical College, was present as the chief discussant.
Mohammad Nazrul Islam, Program Officer of Solidarity Center-Bangladesh Office, said that workers working in tanneries are suffering from various diseases including skin diseases, malnutrition, and respiratory problems. In the speech, Md. Mizanur Rahman said workers and management officials must be careful and responsible regarding the use of chemicals, operation of machines and electrical hazards.
He called upon various NGOs and organizations to come forward to provide appropriate training to the members of the factory safety committee formed to improve the health and safety situation.
In his speech, Dr. Belal Ahmed said that protection measures should be strengthened to stay free from diseases. Everyone should refrain from taking unhealthy food, live a clean life.
Abdul Malek, General Secretary of Tannery Workers Union, in his welcome speech, said that the chemicals used in the tannery industry are harmful to the health of the workers. But health risks can be minimized if necessary safety measures are in place.
President of Tannery Workers Union Abul Kalam Azad said that everyone should behave humanely to protect the health of workers. To meet the nutritional needs of workers, their wages need to be increased.
He demanded the immediate establishment of a hospital for the convenience of workers, owners and local residents in the leather industrial state.