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Online course to help fight sexual harassment at workplace

23 July 2014

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The objective of the course is to provide individuals with a well-informed understanding of all the elements constituting sexual harassment.

New Delhi: The Centre for Social Research (CSR) in partnership with Rainmaker has launched India’s first online course against Sexual Harassment at Workplace. The course, a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC), is a free course featuring lectures by Dr Ranjana Kumari, Director, CSR, accompanied by written course material explaining the content and nuances of the Sexual Harassment Act. This online course is available to anyone with an internet connection and can be accessed via PCs and mobile phones. MOOC will provide the participant with a fundamental understanding of the Sexual Harassment Act in a concise and comprehensive manner. An introduction to the mechanisms and procedures instituted by the Act, to enable a safe working environment for women, is followed by a study into the various avenues available to deal with workplace harassment. The objective of the course is to provide individuals with a well-informed and holistic understanding of all the elements constituting sexual harassment—the act, the prevention and the solutions to combat it. Speaking about the need for effective implementation of the law, Dr Ranjana Kumari, Director of CSR stated, “To have effective, healthy and productive working environments, every institution/organization/unit, where more than ten people work together, should be responsible for ensuring the compliance of the Sexual Harassment at Workplace Act. What happened at ‘Tehelka’ recently was a big reminder that even reputed organizations do not comply with the Act, and these crimes go unreported for a long time.” Sexual harassment is one of the most under-reported crime in most societies and most cases of sexual assaults are against women. Sexual harassment at the workplace typically ranges from mildly distasteful sexist comments and jokes, pornographic material, provocative electronic mail and X-rated computer software all the way to outright assault and rape in extreme cases. There is a growing clamour for the need to maintain a secure work environment and the implementation of these policies is of utmost importance. CSR’s Gender Training Institute also helps organisations create gender sensitive workspaces in compliance with the Act.

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