The Uttar Pradesh government has said that no women workers in the State will be forced to work night shifts or between 7 p.m. and 6 a.m. unless they want to. If they consent to such a shift, they will be provided food as well as pick-up and drop facility from their homes to their place of work, free of cost.
This move, it is hoped, will ensure the safety of women at their workplaces. Henceforth, no factory owners can fire or terminate the employment of women workers who refuse to work night shifts.
This was revealed in the Uttar Pradesh government’s budget unveiling.
The budget has special focus on employment generation, infrastructure, health and safety, well-being of farmers and women’s empowerment.
It was also stated that all employer will be required to ensure that women are provided with proper washrooms, toilets, changing rooms, drinking water and adequate lighting at the workplace.
Factory owners have been asked to submit a report every month, revealing data on women working night shifts, to the inspector of factories of their respective regions.
The state government has asked employers of both the private and public sectors, to ensure that women are protected from harassment of any kind at the workplace, in keeping with the amended rule of the Factories Act, 1948, to protect women employees from incidents of sexual harassment at the workplace.
To ensure this, all employers need to have in place a proper complaint mechanism in the factories, as stated in the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013 or other related provisions.