November 28, 2012
A horrifying story breaking out of Bangladesh this morning as a factory fire kills at least 112 people.
The factory manufactured clothing for the likes of Sean “Puffy” Combs, Walmart, Disney, Sears and other western brands.
Inspectors said boxes of Faded Glory brand as well as Hip-Hop guru, Sean Combs’ brand shorts and T-shirts lay burning on the floor or stacked smoldering cartons.
Documents found in the charred building indicated upcoming jobs included Disney and Sears.
An Associated Press reporter searching the factory Wednesday found these and other clothes, including sweaters from the French company Teddy Smith, among the equipment charred in the fire that killed 112 workers Saturday. He also found entries in account books indicating that the factory took orders to produce clothes for Disney, Sears and other Western brands.
Garments and documents left behind in the factory show it was used by a host of major American and European retailers, though at least one of them — Wal-Mart — had been aware of safety problems. Wal-Mart blames a supplier for using Tazreen Fashions without its knowledge.
The fire has elevated awareness of something labor groups, retailers and governments have known for years: Bangladesh’s fast-growing garment industry — second only to China’s in exports — is rife with dangerous workplaces. More than 300 workers there have died in fires since 2006.
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