I matter, I matter equally. Not ‘if only’ not ‘as long as’. I matter. Full stop
– Chimamanda Adichie.
Every woman matters and the rights of every woman matter. When in today’s world women are walking shoulder by shoulder with men in every field, yet they need to fight for equality. For instance, the employer does not consider them as an ideal candidate. Henceforth, they face discrimination based on gender due to various stereotypes regarding female employment. Moreover, women do not feel safe in their houses nor their workplaces. And there are thousands of examples to justify her fear. They face domestic violence in their own home. Furthermore, it does not end here and they face discrimination at the workplace as well.
Through the women’s empowerment movement, women have been consistently raising their voices. Women empowering movement or the feminism movement – the voice to ask for equal and basic human rights are still ongoing.
Women empowerment: Why is it important
Now, women empowerment is when a girl or a woman is free to talk about her rights, make decisions about her life freely. It is a movement to make women strong enough to raise a voice for themselves in society. While Talking about women’s rights, it includes the decision of getting married, having children, working, or spending money. A girl or woman should have all the rights to take all the small and big decisions of her life by herself.
For ages, women are trying to break all the barriers that society has set for them. Meanwhile, a girl’s empowerment does not only benefit her, but it is also beneficial for the society and economy. When women feel safe and they have all the rights, it gives them the chance to shine. But, in reality, the scene is still not fair to women. Women are still seen as less valuable than men. Basic rights such as the right to education, healthcare are denied to women because of their gender. And to break all the barriers and stereotypes, the women empowering movement is becoming essential day by day\
Treating all people fairly at work and respecting and supporting non-discrimination is one of the major principles of the women empowering movement. But even after all the progress and fights somehow women still face discrimination, violence, harassment at work. There are different types of work environments. Women have been playing a crucial role in workplaces.
Therefore, women employees must be aware of the workplace laws.
Moreover, here are 5 laws that every working woman should be aware of
Law against sexual harassment
Almost every woman has faced sexual harassment in her workplace. Unfortunately, this is so common now that every woman would accept this fact. Meanwhile, every woman who has been a victim of sexual harassment at work must know that there is a law against sexual harassment at work. The sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace Act was enacted in 2013. This law seeks to guard women against harassment at their workplace. Additionally, sexual harassment at work is considered a violation of fundamental rights as well as basic human rights.
Law for maternity benefits
A woman can be a mom as well as a CEO today. So if a working woman is pregnant or taking care of her newborn baby she should be aware of the Maternity Benefit Act,1961. It includes benefits like paid leave to work from home. This is empowerment in true sense. The Act specifically mentions that-
-No woman has to work six weeks after the day of her delivery, pregnancy, or miscarriage.
-In case there is any illness because of pregnancy, miscarriage, delivery of the child, or tubectomy operation the woman employee is entitled to a leave of absence with wages at the rate of maternity benefits.
-In case of adopting any child below the age of 3, the period of maternity allowed under the Act would be 12 weeks from the day of adoption.
-The woman employee is allowed to have a leave of two weeks in the case of tubectomy.
Law for equal pay and empowerment
If a woman can do equal office work as a man and why should they get less salary? Well, there are still some places where women are paid less than their man colleagues. Furthermore, the Equal Remuneration Act under Article 39 lets women claim equal pay as men. As per this law, employers need to pay an equal amount to both male and female employees. Along with that, the law also says that there should not be any discrimination against women during the hiring process.
Law protecting women working at the night shift
The Occupational Safety, Health, and Working Condition Act, 2020 allows women to work in the night shifts. Meanwhile, the Act also mandates that establishments have to ensure the work is safe for women to work even during the night shift. It also includes that –
-They first have to take the consent of the female employee.
-They have to provide the women employees with transport during the night shift.
-The toilet, washroom, and other facilities should be near the workplace.
-The office area including the canteen, washroom, and toilet of women employees has to be well-lit.
The Civil Rights Act
The Civil Rights Act recognizes that every human being is equal and that is why they should be treated equally everywhere even in the workplace. This act mandates that employers can not do any discrimination during hiring, employed and the exit process.
Let us empower our women
In the current scenario, one in three women around the world is experiencing gender-based violence. In many places, women are being treated as nothing but a toy. A survey reports that over one-third of women had experienced sexual harassment at their workplace. And this has to stop. Meanwhile, the first step towards this is creating awareness among the employees. Additionally, women should be encouraged more to talk about their problems and raise their voices. Furthermore, there should be a zero-tolerance policy for any action that makes a woman uncomfortable. If you are aware of these then you are ready to face any challenges that comes your way. Hence, Employ Woman is the best way to get on grid.