Workplace Harassment! Know the laws!
The harassment a woman faces in her workplace can be sexual or physical. Even the unscrupulous use of power intended to frighten, threaten, intimidate, and gain control over is a kind of workplace harassment. It can be emotional, financial, spiritual, psychological, sexual or physical. Other forms of harassment include degrading a woman in front of everybody or bullying or insulting the woman or any kind of unpalatable touching. However, it is important to note that only certain forms of violence are considered to be against the law.
There are Acts regarding the harassment a woman face every day at her work place. “The Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace Act (2013) is a legislative in India that seeks to protect women from sexual harassment at their place of work. It was reported by the International Labour Organization that very few Indian employers were compliant to this statute. Most Indian employers have not implemented the law despite the legal requirement that any workplace with more than 10 employees need to implement it. The government has threatened to take stern action against employers who fail to comply with this law” (Wikipedia). According to the Press Information Bureau of the Government of India, “the Act will ensure that women are protected against sexual harassment at all the work places, be it in public or private. This will contribute to realization of their right to gender equality, life and liberty and equality in working conditions everywhere. The sense of security at the workplace will improve women’s participation in work, resulting in their economic empowerment and inclusive growth”.
Every woman has a right to work at a place with her own merits and dignity. No one has the right to harass you by any means, so it high time to protest against any dog that barks at you. First make your colleagues know about the wrong attitude of the harasser, and then register a complaint in the police station.
About the Author: The article has been contributed by our intern, Amrita Dasgupta.