Khanam (left), protesting outside The Children’s Place in April.
Aklima Khanam may have survived the deadly collapse of the Rana Plaza building in Bangladesh on April 24, 2013, but you’d hardly call her one of the lucky ones. Once the breadwinner of her family, the 20-year-old sewed loops onto pants seven days a week, 120 hours a week, for $125 a month, until that fateful day left her with multiple head, chest, and leg injuries—not to mention untreated post-traumatic anxiety—that prevent her from finding work. Liana Foxvog of the International Labor Rights Forum spoke to Khanam on April 6, while she was on a speaking tour of the United States organized by United Students Against Sweatshops. This is her story.