Sexual harassment at the workplace is a concern across industries. It imposes a range of costs that impact individuals, including the aggrieved person, the respondent (i.e., the person against whom a complaint has been filed), the employers and the company at large.
In India, we have a dedicated law named the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act (POSH Act) which was enforced in 2013. The objective of this act is to create safe workplaces for women in our country and protect their dignity. The law has laid down detailed provisions with regards to the redressal mechanism in case a woman who has been subjected to some form of sexual harassment at the workplace decides to file a complaint.
While redressal comes into picture after an incident has occurred, the spirit of the POSH Act is prevention. In order to achieve this, the law has laid down the primary responsibility on the employer to create safe workplaces free from any form of sexual harassment.
One of the preventive steps which employer is mandated to take is to organise workshops and awareness programs at regular intervals for sensitising the employees with the legal provisions and programs for the Internal Committee (IC) members to equip them with the skills required to conduct POSH inquiries in a fair and just manner while ensuring it is within the ambit of the law.
There are various benefits of conducting POSH awareness sessions, such as:
- Compliance with the Law:
Since the law has made it mandatory to conduct POSH awareness sessions, doing the same will help comply with the legal obligations. The logic to have this provision in the law was to ensure that everybody who is a part of the workforce is aware of what could constitute sexual harassment, who, when, where and how can a complaint be filed and the available redressal options among other things.
- Helps in creating healthy workplaces:
Not only legal compliance, it also helps in creating a safe, equitable and healthy work environment. The first step towards achieving the goal of safe workplace free from any form of harassment, including sexual harassment, is to create awareness and sensitise the employees. Conducting POSH trainings helps in getting closer to this goal as the employees not only understand what the law says in terms of what constitutes sexual harassment but also explains what the consequences of their actions could be. This also covers the conduct expected of them at workplace, in line with the vision of the organization.
- Improves productivity:
POSH awareness trainings not only help in employee sensitisation but also gives them a sense of relief that their company believes in creating safe workplaces and there are mechanisms that have been developed in case an untoward incident happens. This feeling of security in turn makes the employees feel at ease and they are in a better position to concentrate and work efficiently. This ultimately also benefits the organization.
Therefore, conducting POSH awareness sessions has much more benefits than just compliance. While conducting such sessions, it is essential that organizations ensure these sessions are planned well, cover the key aspects that employees must know and also speak about the vision of the organization, along with measures taken so far. Its also very important to explain the interpretation of ‘sexual harassment’ in the current world as that is most likely to impact employees in their day to day life.
POSHequili, a vertical of Equilibrio Advisory LLP, empanelled with the Ministry of Women and Child Development, Government of India, can provide you the right kind of content. Having conducted 2000+ such sessions, the team is well versed with the topic and shall customise the content keeping your needs in mind.
POSH at Work believes that sexual harassment at workplace does not only cause mental and/or physical damage to the person harassed but also seriously curtails opportunities at work by creating a discriminatory work environment. We believe that, in order to ensure equal participation and equal opportunity at work, it is extremely important to do away with discriminatory behaviour and re-instil the faith of employees/workers in the organization. Advantages of collaborating with us:
All our trainers undergo extensive training themselves before they start conducting such sessions. As they are also external members in the IC of various organizations and handle POSH inquiries, they are able to bring real life experience as well as examples. Sessions, therefore, cover practical aspects, activities, case studies as well as some bit of theory.
- Customised Content:
We create customised content for every session depending on your requirements. Also, each session is unique. Hence, even if the same, the content does not feel repetitive.
- Interactive Sessions:
Sexual harassment is subject. A subjective understanding is therefore every important. We do not believe in conducting our trainings as a monologue. Our trainings are designed in a way that each of the participants interacts with the trainer.
- Other unique aspects and ideas for implementation:
In the last several years we have done several sessions which have been unique to the audience. We curate unique activities as well. These can be discussed and an appropriate plan can be made for you.
- We have elearning modules too:
We have elearning content for all audience types. Hence, if your employees are scattered and its difficult to bring them together, this may work well.
- Our experience with contract workers:
If your employee base largely has contract workers for whom launching elearning may be tough and general sessions may be tough too, we can plan these sessions in a unique way for you.
You can access the details regarding the POSH awareness training programs that we conduct by clicking here. To organize training workshops for your employees, Internal Committee members, management, etc. you can reach out to us at email@example.com.
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