In general, evidence on what works in addressing Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) and Workplace Violence (WPV) against working women, particularly garment workers is limited worldwide.
Given the massive increase in women’s employment in factories globally, and specifically in Bangladesh, with the potential to increase women’s experiences of violence in the home and workplace, there remains a lack of effective interventions to reduce this.
The present study describes an evaluation of HERrespect, an intervention which aims to address IPV and WPV against female garment workers in and around Dhaka.
Women in Bangladesh experience high rates of Intimate Partner Violence (IPV). IPV is more prevalent against income earning women compared to their non-earning counterparts, and Workplace Violence (WPV) is also common. Such violence is a violation of women’s rights, and also constrains them from contributing to their personal growth, household, community and the economy at large.
There is limited evidence on what works to prevent IPV and WPV amongst garment workers. This paper describes an evaluation of HERrespect, an intervention which aims to reduce IPV and WPV against female garment workers in and around Dhaka, Bangladesh.
The trial employs a quasi-experimental design, with four intervention and four control factories. In the intervention factories a randomly selected cohort of married female line workers, a cohort of male line workers, and all middle management staff received the intervention.
The intervention strategies involved (1) gender transformative group-based training for workers and management staff; (2) joint session between workers (15 female and male) and middle-management staff; (3) factory-wide activities; (4) awareness raising among top management; (5) factory policy review and development and 6) a community based campaign.
For the evaluation, a cohort of randomly selected female workers and a cohort of selected management staff have been established. All workers (n = 800) and management staff (n = 395) from these cohorts were interviewed at baseline using two different questionnaires and will be interviewed in the endline, 24 months post-baseline.
Intention to treat analysis will be used for assessing the impact of HERrespect, comparing the intervention and control factories. This is the first study that seeks to evaluate the impact on IPV and WPV, of group sessions with female workers, male workers, and management; factory-wide campaigns and a community intervention among female garment workers in Bangladesh.
Apart from informing programmers and policymakers about intervention effectiveness in reducing IPV and WPV against female garment workers this study will also present evidence on an intervention tailored to the situation in the garment sector, which makes HERrespect scalable.