Nazma Akter

Founding Executive Director 

- Awaj Foundation

Nazma Akter is the founder and Executive Director of Awaj Foundation. She has been fighting to improve workers’ rights, especially women workers, in the garment sector in Bangladesh for over 32 years. Nazma is also the President of Sommilito Garments Sramik Federation, one of the largest union federations in Bangladesh, an Ashoka Fellow 2019 and Executive Member and Co-chair of the Asia Pacific Women’s Committee of IndustriALL Global Union. As the Executive Director of Awaj Foundation, Nazma has focused her efforts on increasing women’s participation in decision-making at the workplace and at home, improving negotiation and bargaining skills among women garment workers so that they can build better relationships between workers and factory management and creating harmonious industrial relations in the garment sector in Bangladesh. For an example Over 70% women among 90 organized Trade Unions trained to her direct or indirect supervision, another significant achievement is since 2016 , 17 Collective bargaining agreements signed between Trade Union (workers)and  management to women trade union leaders trained by Nazma sitting at the front of negotiation tables. Another one of her greatest successes in Bangladesh has been to help double the minimum wage for textile workers. Now She has gained numbers of recognitions nationally and internationally. Since 1992, Nazma regularly intervenes in regional and international forums, high-level meetings and conferences meetings to share her experience and further awareness on the global issues of the garment and textile industry linked to rights of women workers and children.

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