11th Anniversary of the Rana Plaza Collapse


April 24, 2024            Gatineau, Quebec         Employment and Social Development Canada

Today, Minister of Labour Seamus O’Regan Jr., issued the following statement:

“On April 24, 2013, the Rana Plaza in Dhaka, Bangladesh, which housed five garment factories, collapsed. Over 1,100 were killed, and more than 2,500 people were injured. Eleven years later, we remember and honour the lives that were lost. Our thoughts are with those who are still grieving. There are people who are still living with injuries. There are still workers around the world who are risking their lives for a paycheque. 

Since that day, the Government of Bangladesh has improved working conditions, but there’s a lot more to do. Canada welcomes these changes, but we encourage Bangladesh to do more to prevent discrimination, violence, and harassment in the workplace, including anti-union discrimination, making sure labour inspectors enforce labour laws, and promote the full exercise of freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining.

Canada’s supply chains are far-reaching and we have an obligation to every single worker across them. This year, we will introduce legislation to help eradicate forced labour from Canadian supply chains. The legislation will be strong, effective, and enforceable. We've also built labour provisions into all our trade agreements, and our Indo-Pacific Strategy committed $25 million to raise labour standards and build partnerships to improve workers rights in the region, including pilot projects on workplace health and safety standards.

One thing I have learned in my time as Minister of Labour is that Canada sets the bar when it comes to workers’ rights. When we raise that bar, countries around the world follow. Our leadership matters. We have a responsibility to protect workers from disasters like the Rana Plaza collapse. We will keep raising the bar.”


For media enquiries, please contact:

Hartley Witten
Press Secretary and Senior Communications Advisor
Office of the Minister of Labour and Seniors, Seamus O’Regan Jr.

Media Relations Office
Employment and Social Development Canada
Follow us on X (Twitter)

Page details

Date modified: