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POSH at Workplace

“The sexual harassment of women at workplace Prevention, Prohibition, and Redressal Act 2013”, commonly known as POSH (Prevention of Sexual Harassment) Act aims at providing work environment free from sexual harassment.

Scope & Applicability

POSH Act extends to whole of India. The POSH Act lays down compliances requirements for every organization where ten or more number of employees are working. These include a properly constituted IC (Internal Committee), providing training in order to create awareness amongst employees, orientation and skill building for the IC, and displaying the consequences of sexual harassment through posters and signage at the workplace, to name a few. The act is not gender neutral. It protects only women. Thus, the protection is not provided for men even if employer may opt to extend protection to men. Every women at workplace, whether employed or not, is protected under this act. The protection under this act is available when the incident is taken place at "workplace" including "extended workplace"

What is sexual harassment

Any unwelcome sexually tinted behavior whether directly or by implication whether any or combination of below such as,

  1. physical contact and advances

  2. demand or request for sexual favours

  3. Making sexually coloured remarks

  4. Showing pornography

  5. or any other unwelcome, physical, verbal, non-verbal conduct of sexual nature

  6. Creating hostile working environment

The employer, under this act have an obligation to provide safe working environment by setting up mechanism for reporting the compliant, redressal, punishment, providing relief to victim. The policies and mechanism is to be formally established and complied with.

Consequences of non-compliance

Rather than compliance, an employer should consider this as moral responsibility to provide secure and safe work environment to venerable women employees. The directors of the company need to give disclosure while filling annual return of the company. The POSH Act states that non-compliance can lead to a fine of Rs. 50,000 in the first instance and thereafter, loss of license to carry out business.

#POSH@Workplace, #POSH, #Workplace&Extended_WorkPlace, #Metoo

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