Duties and Scope of IC:
The ICC is responsible for receiving and investigating every complaint of sexual harassment, submitting findings and recommendation of the inquiry to the Manager and coordinating with the Manager, before recommending any kind of appropriate action. The committee is also responsible to maintain confidentiality throughout the process.
It is the duty of Good Samaritan School as the employer to provide a safe working environment and conduct awareness programs, regarding the prevention of sexual harassment and provide necessary assistance and facilities to the committee in dealing with the complaints.
Procedure for dealing with the Complaints:
The complaint, backed up with all the requisite material and relevant details, is needed to be lodged within 3 months from the date of incident along with any documentary evidence or names of witnesses, if available. The IC can also extend the timeline to another 3 months, if it is satisfied with the reasons which prevented the lodging of a complaint within the first 3 months. The complaint shall have to be in form whether through phone or email, but every oral communication should be followed up with the written communication and in a case, wherein a complaint cannot be made in writing, then the presiding officer or any member of the committee shall assist the person for making the complaint in writing.
Any anonymous complaint received through any of the modes can’t be considered by our IC.
In case if the aggrieved person is unable to lodge the complaint, then any person who is having knowledge of the incident or any family-member/ relative/ friend or co-worker can lodge the complaint on behalf of her, with all the material and relevant details. It is the responsibility of the person who receives the complaint to inform the committee- members.
Our IC shall initiate necessary action and inquiries within 7 working days from the date of the receipt of the complaint. The IC has the right to check all the CCTV footage in the school, the relevant places, and relevant duties at times.
Our IC shall ensure that once a complaint is received, it will be kept confidential.
As per the policy, our IC can try and make parties to settle, but monetary compensation is not the basis for settlement. If the aggrieved person is not ready to settle, then the IC will inquire into the complaint and both the parties will get a chance to be heard and complete the inquiry within 90 days. After the inquiry, if the person, who committed such act, is found guilty, then Corrective Action is taken or punishment as per our Service Rules is given by the appropriate authority.
False Allegations/ Frivolous Complaints:
In order to ensure that the protections envisaged under the SHWW Act are not misused, provisions for action against “false or malicious” complaints have been included in the statute. As per the SHWW Act, if the IC concludes that the allegations made by the complainant is false or malicious or the complaint has been made knowing it to be untrue or forged or misleading information has been provided during the inquiry, disciplinary action in accordance with the service rules of the school can be taken against such complainant.
Where the school does not have service rules, the statute provides that disciplinary action such as written apology, undergoing a counseling session, carrying out community service, warning, reprimand, censure, withholding of promotion, withholding of pay rise or increments, terminating from service, may be taken.
The SHWW Act further clarifies that the mere inability to substantiate a complaint or provide adequate proof need not mean that the complaint is false or malicious.
- On the completion of an inquiry under this Act, the Internal Committee shall provide a report of its findings to the employer within a period of ten days from the date of completion of the inquiry and such report be made available to the concerned parties.
- Where the Internal Committee arrives at the conclusion that the allegation against the respondent has not been proved, it shall recommend to the employer that no action is required to be taken in the matter.
- Where the Internal Committee arrives at the conclusion that the allegation against the respondent has been proved, it shall recommend to the employer—
- to take action for sexual harassment as a misconduct in accordance with the provisions of the service rules applicable to the respondent or where no such service rules have been made, in such manner as may be prescribed;
- to deduct, notwithstanding anything in the service rules applicable to the respondent, from the salary or wages of the respondent such sum as it may consider appropriate to be paid to the aggrieved woman or to her legal heirs, as it may determine, in accordance with the provisions of section 15:
Provide that in case the employer is unable to make such deduction from the salary of the respondent due to his being absent from duty or cessation of employment it may direct to the respondent to pay such sum to the aggrieved woman:
4. Where the Internal Committee arrives at a conclusion that the allegation against the respondent is malicious or the supposed aggrieved woman or any other person making the complaint has made the complaint knowing it to be false or the supposed aggrieved woman or any other person making the complaint has produced any forged or misleading document, it may recommend to the employer to take action against the woman or the person who has made the complaint under sub-section (1)or sub-section (2) of section 9, as the case may be, in accordance with the provisions of the service rules applicable to her or him or where no such service rules exist, in such manner as may be prescribed:
- Provided that a mere inability to substantiate a complaint or provide adequate proof need not attract action against the complainant under this section:
- Provided further that the malicious intent on part of the complainant shall be established after an inquiry in accordance with the procedure prescribed, before any action is recommended.
5. Where the Internal Committee arrives at a conclusion that during the inquiry any witness has given false evidence or produced any forged or misleading document, it may recommend to the employer of the witness to take action in accordance with the provisions of the service rules applicable to the said witness or where no such service rules exist, in such manner as may be prescribed.
Reliefs to the Victims:
- Monetary compensation
- Grant leave for 3 months
- Transfer of the victims to any other department where she feels safe to work
Penalty or Disciplinary Action:
In case the respondent, against whom the charges of sexual harassment were made, is found guilty, disciplinary action as per the Service Rules at Good Samaritan School will be initiated against him.
Our IC will make an endeavour to complete the entire cycle of procedure, from inquiry-initiation to completion, within 90 days from the date of the start of the procedure. They can take another 10 days to prepare the Inquiry and Findings Reports and chart out the procedure followed.
As per section 21 of the SHWW Act, our IC is required to prepare an annual report for each calendar year and submit it to the Management and Chairman and the area’s District Officer.
As per the Rule 14 of the SHWW Act, our IC should include the following in its annual report:
- Number of sexual harassment complaints received in the year
- Number of complaints disposed of during the year
- Number of cases pending for more than 90 days
- Number of workshops or awareness-programme against sexual harassment carried out
- Nature of actions taken by our Manager or Chairman.
General Terms and Conditions
In case of interpretation of any provisions under the policy, the provisions under relevant law, rules or amendments as the case may be, shall prevail.
The rules contained herein can be changed anytime by our management, in accordance with the law.
All other provisions and rules of the SHWW Act, 2013 shall apply in letter and spirit, as per the requirement of different situations.
We, at Good Samaritan school are deep in our commitment to abide by the SHWW Act, 2013 in its true spirit.
We’ve adopted the policy in its entirety to create a healthy working environment that enables our women employees to work without fear of prejudice, gender-bias and sexual harassment.