[View:http://community.cengage.com/GECResource/themes/gew/utility/ :550:0] MSNBC clip posted on YouTube May 17, 2013 " We are not even talking about wages here. We are just making sure that a building doesn't fall on top of you...and kill you...There is an obvious and irrefutable moral case for these companies to do that ." image from www.demotix.com In response to the outrage in the face of the recent Rana Plaza tragedy (notwithstanding many previous accidents due to a lack of safety controls), several retailers, led by Swedish-based H&M, have signed on to a five year contract to improve safety conditions in Bangladesh. According to the New York Times , "The plan requires companies to have rigorous independent inspections and to help pay for fire safety upgrades, like adding fire escapes, which many factories still lack." These are the retailers who HAVE signed the pledge (it looks as though these are mostly foreign-based): Benetton H&M Zara (Inditex) Tesco Marks & Spencer PVH (Phillips-Van Heusen, USA), owners of Calvin Klein and Tommy Hilfiger These are some of the retailers who have refused to sign the pledge as of May 19, 2013: GAP Target Walmart Macy's Sears JC Penney The North Face Kohl's Made In The Shade OshKosh Nordstrom's American Eagle Outfitters FootLocker Retailers refusing to sign the pledge have cited the risk of lawsuits. There are also concerns that participation may result in higher clothing prices for U.S. consumers. Sources: " GAP, Target Walmart: American Retailers snub Safety Agreement for Bangladesh ," reported by Chris Hayes, MSNBC , May 17, 2013. " As Firms Line Up on Factories, Walmart Plans Solo Effort ," by Stephen Greenhouse, The New York Times , May 14, 2013. " H&M, Zara, and other Brands Pledge to Help Bangladesh ," by Julie Ma, New York Magazine , May 13, 2013. " Bangladesh Factory Accord: At Least 14 Major North American Retailers Refuse to Sign, " Huffington Post , May 17, 2013 and May 20, 2013. Follow up: Is this a serious business dilemma, or a no-brainer, as the broadcaster seems to assert? What are the issues? How many people were killed in the Rana Plaza factory, according to the video story? What would be the public reaction if that tragedy happened in the USA? Would you pay more money for a pair of jeans if you knew they were produced in a safe factory? That is, would you be more likely, knowing about this agreement, to purchase clothes from H&M rather than the GAP? Why or why not?