Karnataka plans guidelines for safety of women working on night shifts
The order, issued under the provisions of Contract Labour (Regulation and Abolition) Karnataka Rules, 1974, on Dec. 19, states that women cannot be employed at night without their consent
The Karnataka government has proposed some guidelines to employers to safeguard the interests of women working on night shifts. The proposed rules will come into effect once those are published in the official gazette.
The order, issued under the provisions of Contract Labour (Regulation and Abolition) Karnataka Rules, 1974, on Dec. 19, states that women cannot be employed at night without their consent.
Other rules mentioned are:
1. there shall be more than one woman employee on night shift;
- transport from her residence to workplace and back shall be provided free of cost, and with adequate security;
- employment of women employees shall be on a rotational basis;
- adequate number of security guards shall be posted during night shifts;
- sufficient restrooms with adequate water supply shall be provided separately for women for their privacy; and
- the establishment shall bear the cost of crèche facility obtained by the women employees from voluntary and other organisations.
The government cautioned that a breach of conditions imposed would lead to withdrawal of license.
Companies have also been asked to obtain the bio-data of drivers and conduct a pre-employment screening before hiring them. The rule is applicable for drivers sourced from another agency too.
The schedules of routes to be taken have to be decided by the supervisory office of the company only. In case of exigencies, change of drivers/routes/shifts shall be allowed only with prior knowledge of supervisory officers.
The mobile phone and address of women employees shall not be disclosed to unauthorised persons. Careful selection of routes shall be made in such a way that, ordinarily, no woman shall be picked up first or dropped last.
The company shall provide security guards at workplace and for the night shift vehicles when women employees are being picked up first and dropped last. The company shall have a control room and travel desk to check the vehicle movement.
Labour Minister Santosh Lad told Bangalore Mirror that the rules were applicable to women employed at any establishment, including malls, dance bars, industries, IT&BT companies and such.