Panel formed to make working environment safe for women

Kathmandu, July 21:

The Ministry of Women, Children and Social Welfare (MoWCSW) has formed an 11-member committee led by joint secretary of MoWCSW to ensure secure working environment for women.

In the budget speech, the government had promised to adopt a policy of ‘zero tolerance’ towards violence against women at workplace. The committee has been formed to implement the commitment.

The committee, which comprises representatives of the Department of Women Development, the National Planning Commission, the Ministry of Finance, Mainstreaming Gender Equity Programme, and a joint secretary, an undersecretary and a section officer of the MoWCSW, has formulated a preliminary draft of the zero tolerance policy.

“The draft will be circulated to all the line ministries and commissions so as to obtain feedback from them. Gender focal persons will be asked to come up with the definition of ‘zero tolerance’,” said Ritu Raj Bhandari, undersecretary of the MoWCSW. According to Bhandari, the preliminary draft focuses on preventive and curative measures to make sure women do not have to face physical, mental and emotional harassment at workplace. It also focuses on the need to adopt women-friendly environment so that their productivity and efficiency can be increased.

The MoWCSW has given away letters of appreciation to institutions that have employed over one-third of women in their workforce.