In the Sylhet division, the north-eastern division of Bangladesh, the Marist Brothers of Bangladesh run the Moulvibazar Education Program, a program which aims to ensure access to quality education for children and young people of the tea plantation workers who live in extremely vulnerable conditions. 

The tea plantations of Bangladesh are not just sources of employment but also home to communities often marginalized and deprived of basic rights, including education.

For this reason, the Marist Brothers of Bangladesh, together with FMSI and the International Catholic Center of Geneva (CCIG) have decided to bring this situation to light submitting a Universal Periodic Review under the United Nations last April. The report focuses on the human rights situation of children and families living in tea plantations in Sylhet, addressing 4 key areas: child labor, corporal punishment, early marriages, and access to quality education.

After submitting the report, this NGO coalition actively worked together to monitor the impact of the recommendations submitted through the UPR report. This allowed FMSI and the Marist Brothers of Bangladesh to take the floor during the 55th session of the United Nations Human Rights Council. 

On this occasion, FMSI and the Marist Brothers of Bangladesh reviewed the recommendations accepted and noted on topics that are priorities and used them as an opportunity to reiterate the issues and recommendations of their UPR submission. 

Their intervention is available here: 43rd Meeting – 55th Regular Session of Human Rights Council | UN Web TV at minute 43:09.

The efforts of the Marist Brothers of Bangladesh highlight the importance of addressing the rights and needs of communities living in vulnerable conditions, particularly those living in tea plantations in Sylhet, Bangladesh. 

By the UPR report to the United Nations and actively monitoring its recommendations, they have taken significant steps towards ensuring access to quality education and bringing to light issues such as child labour, corporal punishment, and early marriages.

Click here to know more about the UPR mechanism and the commitment of the Marist Brothers and FMSI on child rights.

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