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15 Jan 2019

Ewelina U. Ochab, Forbes

India: The story of how women are subjected to violence in Indian factories

"The story of how women are subjected to violence in Indian factories", 2 January 2019

...In December 2018, HERrespect published new data on the extent of violence against women in Indian factories...The study surveyed 11,500 women and men working in the factories and their managers...The data highlight the challenges of gender-based violence and sexual harassment within Indian society...

[It] identifies several factors that drive violence against women whether at home or in the workplace. These include, “the dominant gender norms that reinforce the unequal relationship between women and men.”...[Another] factor is a “general acceptance of harassment and violence against women in the workplace” and the perception that “violence as the most accessible and effective way to achieve production targets.” These derive from and are driven by societal attitudes but also a fundamental lack of managerial skills...

The study...suggests that businesses can and must play a major role in changing these attitudes in relation to violence against women or towards sexual harassment. One way would be to ensure that businesses invest in adequate training for all workers and managers who might come into contact with issues of violence against women and sexual harassment. Businesses must also ensure that the managers they appoint have the necessary managerial skills or undergo such training to be able to conduct their work. Finally, businesses should ensure that they have adequate procedures in place to allow women who are subject to violence or sexual harassment at work to report this treatment without fear of reprisal so that it receives an adequate and timely response. Businesses can play an important role to combat gender.