Category Archives: Safety & Health

Tangled Threads

“Tangled Threads” chronicles labor rights activist Kalpona Akter’s organizing efforts in Bangladesh’s garment industry before and after the Rana Plaza building collapse, which claimed the lives of at least 1,138 garment workers. It does so against the backdrop of two very different worlds: New York’s modeling industry, on the one hand, and Bangladesh’s garment industry, on the other. Produced by STZFilms.

Directed by: Sara Ziff

Sara Ziff is a New York-based filmmaker, fashion model, and labor activist. She co-directed and produced the feature documentary “Picture Me” (2009), which shed light on labor issues in the modeling industry, particularly sexual abuse. Currently she serves as co-founder and executive director of the Model Alliance, a nonprofit labor group for models working in the American fashion industry. Ziff first traveled to Bangladesh in 2012, when she began collaborating with the Bangladesh Center for Worker Solidarity (BCWS) and the International Labor Rights Forum (ILRF) to try to organize workers across fashion’s supply chain.




Car Wash Workers in NYC Clean Up Dirty Business

The WASH NY Campaign. the story of the recently successful campaign by RWDSU to bring dignity and fairness to exploited “Carwasheros” around NYC. Special recognition to Charles Fostrom and Janna Pea of the RWDSU and Chio Valerio of New York Communities for Change.

Directed by: Charles Fostrom and Janna Pea of the RWDSU and Chio Valerio of New York Communities for Change


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Another Promise (2014)

original title: Another Family

Based on a true story of a working-class family whose daughter went to work at Samsung semiconductor factory, contracted leukemia during her time there and died from the disease in 2007.

Crowd-Sourced Film on Samsung Debuts


Black Thursday (CZARNY CZWARTEK)

by Antoni Krauze (Poland) –  contemporary take on the tragic events when Gdansk shipyard workers were killed by police during strike of December 1970 – got a FIPRESCI PRIZE (FIPRESCI Prize for a film in the World Competition) award at 37th Montreal World Film Festival.

Still a painfully remembered event, the brutally suppressed shipyard strikes of December 1970 get a stirring, street-level dramatization from Antoni Krauze that focuses on the tragic story of Brunon Drywa and family. When protests spread among coastal towns, troops in Gdynia responded by firing on people on their way to work; the victims would include Drywa, who was shot in the back. Filming on historic locations in Gdynia, Krauze forcefully brings to the screen a rarely depicted yet pivotal chapter in Polish history.


The Machinists (2010)


Directed by: Hannan Majid and Richard York
Documentary Feature (52 minutes)

In the teeming city neighborhoods of Bangladesh, young women work 15 hour days. In dangerous and dirty conditions, they make high fashion clothes for Europe and the USA. Their children suffer, their parents suffer and yet they find the will to fight back and organize a union. These women just suffered the worst factory fire disaster since the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire in NYC over 100 years ago. Over 112 killed in one fire, with 7 more only weeks later.


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Inside Lara Roxx (2011)


Directed by Mia Donovan
documentary feature (60 minutes)

In the spring of 2004, 21-year-old Lara Roxx left her hometown of Montreal and headed to L.A to try and make a ton of cash in the adult entertainment industry. Within two months of working in this industry she contracted the most virulent form of HIV while performing sex in front of the camera. This documentary is about the adult movie industry and its impact on a young life. Lara Roxx was hired legally and both men she had sex with tested negative for HIV—paperwork to this effect was presented to Roxx prior to shooting the scene. Miss Roxx’s story created a media sensation, but it’s when the media hype dies that Inside Lara Roxx begins – in a psychiatric ward in Montreal. Inside Lara Roxx follows this unlikely young woman through a tumultuous 5-year period as she struggles to build a new identity and find hope in the wake of her past.


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Fluoridegate: An American Tragedy (2013)

Directed by: David Kennedy
Documentary Feature  (65 minutes) 2013fluoridegate-an-american-trajedy

Fluoride, which has been added to the drinking water of most Americans for decades, turns out to be quite dangerous, according to the scientists and health officials in this film. Several of them lost their jobs for being whistleblowers. This film follows their efforts to clear their own names as well as to warning us about this industrial waste poison masquerading as a beneficial public service. The tragedy is that government, industry and trade associations are protecting and promoting a policy known to cause harm to our health. Eye opening.


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Triangle Shirtwaist Fire


The Lithuanian Jungle – Upton Sinclair-inspired Documentary

Trailer for “The Lithuanian Jungle”, the documentary feature film from Storytellers International coming in 2011. The film is based on the characters in the book “The Jungle” by Upton Sinclair. Filmed on location in Chicago and told in a investigative journalism style by filmmakers Randy Richards, Giedrius Subacius and Risé Sanders, this documentary reveals the unknown characters behind the literary classic.


Dandarin labor standards inspectors (2013 TV show)

A new TV drama series featuring labor inspectors and their work started broadcasting in Japan in 2013. This is the first time ever in Japanese TV drama history. The first episode concerns a “bad employer” who harasses workers and refuses to pay overtime. In recent years, people often talk about “black companies” that squeeze everything out of their employees, and that may be why the TV company thought this kind of show could attract audience.

In any case, we are hoping that young students will watch this TV and that the number of applications for an exam to become a labor inspector (which is a relatively obscure profession at the moment, to be honest) will increase. Unfortunately the series has not been translated from Japanese.


Post by Kayo Rokumoto