Making laws work for the poor in Bangladesh

Concern Worldwide is working with members of the Bangladesh parliament to ensure that issues affecting the country’s poorest and most vulnerable citizens are being addressed.

On the initiative of Concern, two All Party Parliamentary Groups (APPGs) – made up of 30 MPs from the Bangladesh parliament – have been set up to prioritise issues affecting two distinctly disadvantaged groups.

These groups are urban pavement dwellers and people living in haorregions which are distinctive wetland regions susceptible to extreme seasonal flooding.

Extreme poverty has left both of these groups marginalised and under-represented by the political system, without any clear policy frameworks to help address their vulnerability.

Concern is working with politicians to advocate on behalf of pavement dwellers and people in the haor regions. We’re trying to ensure that the issues that affect them are given political visibility – and we’re reaping results.

Protecting communities

The haor region can be under water for six months of the year. This severely hampers agriculture, communication and access to basic social services, leaving people there in dire need.

Concern’s political advocacy work has ensured the timely funding of essential maintenance work to embankments and dams prior to the seasonal flash flooding.

Ensuring recognition

We’ve successfully lobbied for the recognition of pavement dwellers in significant national policy papers, namely “The City Corporation Ordinance”. When formally approved by the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development and Cooperatives, the inclusion of these simple two words will ensure pavement dwellers can get the access they so badly need to vital social services.

CWB000003
CWB000003

Advocacy for the disadvantaged

These parliamentary groups have also jointly published two books with the Bangladesh parliament. They highlight the plight of haor people and urban pavement dwellers and provide recommendations as to how parliamentarians might address the rights issues at stake:

  • Parliamentarians Can Make the Difference: Pavement Dwellers Right to survive
  • Parliamentarians Can Make the Difference: Neglected Haor Livelihoods.

We are currently looking to extend this partnership for a further three years in order to build on the great work already done.

In depth

Your support

Support our Liberia water appeal

  • A shocking 90% of people in Liberia have limited access to safe water

  • We’re repairing and building wells to bring clean water to more people

  • The need is huge and we need your help to reach more communities

Support this appeal

New to Concern?

Sign up to find out more about the transformative work we do in 25 of the world's poorest countries.

Before doing so you might like to see our privacy policy.
Share your concern