As part of its ongoing efforts to empower workers and improve the safety of garment factories in Bangladesh, the Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety said its executive director, former U.S. Ambassador to Bangladesh James F. Moriarty, will transition to serving as country director.

In this new role, Moriarty will lead strategic oversight and outreach activities with key stakeholders in Bangladesh’s government, garment industry, and nongovernmental and nonprofit organizations, the Alliance said.

“As our operations team continues to work to empower factory workers and owners, we saw an opportunity to increase our engagement with key stakeholders and focus on long-term sustainability,” said Ellen Tauscher, independent chair of the Alliance.

With safety inspections completed in 100 percent of Alliance factories, 1.2 million workers trained in fire safety at least one time and 50 percent of factory repairs now complete, the Alliance identified an opportunity to direct additional attention toward long-term sustainability of the progress made by the Alliance, the Accord on Fire and Building Safety in Bangladesh, manufacturers and the government to strengthen the infrastructure of the garment industry, the group noted.

As country director, Moriarty will spend more time in Bangladesh working with these partners to support the Bangladesh government and industry to sustain and expand the reach of garment factory improvements after the Alliance comes to a close in 2018. Moriarty takes the post as managing director Rabin Mesbah transitions to lead the Building and Fire Safety Division of Elevate, the management firm responsible for designing, managing and executing all Alliance remediation and training efforts in Bangladesh.

Moriarty said under Mesbah’s leadership, “we’ve made considerable progress in the past two-and-a-half years and I’m looking forward to having even more active engagement with key stakeholders to help us achieve our shared vision of a safer…industry for Bangladeshi workers.”

“I am confident that together we can catalyze progress toward our goal of ensuring that Bangladesh’s garment factories and workers remain safe after 2018, and I’m proud to help chart the course on this effort,” Moriarty added.

The Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety was founded by a group of North American apparel companies, retailers and brands to develop and launch the Bangladesh Worker Safety Initiative, a binding, five-year undertaking aimed at improving safety in Bangladeshi garment factories.

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