POSH Compliance – Creating Safer Workspaces

POSH Compliance – Creating Safer Workspaces

POSH Compliance – Creating Safer Workspaces

POSH:

POSH is an acronym for the prevention of sexual harassment. This act was passed in 2013 thanks to the efforts of the Vishakha group who battled for the cause of safer workplaces. Now organizations have systems in place that exist for grievance redressal regarding workplace sexual harassment.

The POSH act was published in the Gazette of India as Act No. 14 on December 09, 2013. The Indian Ministry of Women and Child Development declared December 09, 2013 as the effective date of the POSH Act.

POSH Compliance

  • All employers are expected to have mechanisms in place that make workplaces harassment-free zones. Non-compliance with the POSH act will result in employers having to bear penalties.
  • Companies with less than ten employees do not need to form what is called an internal complaint committee (ICC), a mandatory committee that exists to protect women at the workplace. Any woman who has been harassed may approach this body to have their grievances redressed.
  • If there are less than ten employees in an organization, complaints must be made to the Local Complaints Committee (LCC). This is overseen by the district magistrate or the district collector.

Elements of POSH Compliance

The following are crucial elements of the POSH compliance checklist that are to be followed in every organization:

Policies

This entry in the checklist asks whether an internal anti-sexual harassment policy has been implemented in the organization.

It also checks if an internal complaint committee (ICC) as per the 2013 act exists in the company or organization.

It also asks if sexual harassment is specified as a form of misconduct under the service rules or employment contract or the standing orders if applicable.

Notices

This provision deals with providing awareness about the existence of the mechanisms in place to deal with sexual harassment in the workplace. The checklist asks managers formulating policies whether employees have enough information regarding the initiatives in place to combat harassment as well as the members of the ICC.

This information could be visible in the form of notices or posters which could be displayed in public areas like the reception, canteen break rooms, etc.

Employee Awareness

This entry deals with empowering employees with information. This asks whether periodic workshops or seminars are conducted to educate employees about the policy and the act and consequences of misconduct.

It also allows managers to begin implementing systems of providing help to employees who have been sexually harassed. This also gives managers to optimark on protocols for the victim to approach the ICC as well as the police if necessary.

The ICC

The ICC is constituted with a minimum of two women on the panel. The ICC consists of a presiding officer who must be a woman, two members from the employees who have a good relationship with all the employees and another member who is from an NGO aware of women’s rights or sexual harassment.

This entry asks managers if the ICC has a required number of members and if they have received skill-building programs, adequate facilities and orientation of the company.

Compliance with ICC Recommendations

The ICC provides recommendations, and this entry asks if they have been followed to make workplaces safer and better. This also asks managers about the monitoring and functioning of the ICC. For instance, whether recommendations are being followed in a timely fashion and their overall functioning is being monitored.

Reports

Reporting involved both the ICC as well as the organization and asks whether they have both submitted incidents of sexual harassment cases in the company.

To know more about the POSH Watch out : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=67flFIoCFtg&t=4s

Let TalentPro help you in constructing safer workplaces. Contact us today to help you with setting up POSH compliances.

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