Practise

Section 22: A Pillar of Compliance

Posted by July 13, 2016

As women continue to join the workforce in greater numbers, the number of incidents of sexual harassment in the workplace may also rise. But now there is a proper forum where women in India can file complaints for sexual harassment at their workplace.

As per The Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013, it is one of the duties of an employer to create an environment which is free from sexual harassment and provide a complaint procedure for women who otherwise would be forced to suffer in silence. Compliance with this law has been made mandatory for every organisation.

One of the enforcing sections of this Act is Section 22 €" 'Employer to include information in Annual Report: The employer shall include in its report the number of cases filed, if any, and their disposal under this Act in the Annual Report of his organisation or where no such report is required to be prepared, intimate such number of cases if any, to the District Officer' €" an important facet of the law explaining the role of how the employer is liable if s/he does not comply with these provisions, and formally file a report on the same.

Disclosure is to be made in terms of a summary. Typically, it would read as:
"The Company has in place an Anti-Sexual Harassment Policy in line with the requirements of The Sexual Harassment of Women at the Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition & Redressal) Act, 2013. Internal Complaints Committee (ICC) has been set up to redress complaints received regarding sexual harassment. All employees (permanent, contractual, temporary, trainees) are covered under this policy.

The following is a summary of sexual harassment complaints received and disposed off during the year 2014-15

> Number of complaints received:
> Number of complaints disposed off:"

How does this benefit the organisation? Not only does this enable an organisation to comply with the law, but it also provides a legal framework which can be followed for better accountability. For instance, if a case of sexual harassment occurs, it is recorded and submitted within the annual report which can be further reproofed as evidence, as it is a part of the annual report. It also saves the company from the situation of non-compliance which can lead to severe monetary penalties and even cancellation of its business license.

Section 22 is an important ancillary to the entire process of compliance which further contributes to a safe and sound environment in any organisation, big or small. To aid your organisation for complying with the law, Complykaro provides all solutions for such needs to be met successfully.


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