District Social Welfare Department (SWD) Doda, in collaboration with District Legal Services Authority (DLSA) today organized a special awareness drive on "Gender Sensitization and Sexual Violence Prevention" with special emphasis on Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplaces (Prevention, Prohibition & Redressal) Act, 2013.
About 100 persons were present in the event organised in the Community hall Bhaderwah under the supervision of District Social welfare officer Tariq Qazi and Secretary DLSA Bhaderwah, Mudasar Farooq and officials of District Hub for Empowerment of women, Mission Shakti Dr. Sanya Khan, Humerah Balwan and Kewal Krishan.
Secretary DLSA, Mudasar Farooq highlighted the different laws and provisions pertaining to Gender Sensitization and prevention of Sexual Harassment of Women at workplaces. He also explained how a person’s body language plays an important role in understanding what he or she feels.
Discussing about various forms of sexual harassment (verbal, physical, visual), he added that silence doesn’t always mean that any act is welcome; and encouraging some behaviour doesn’t mean that any kind of behaviour is welcome.
He also discussed how many women do not complain or report due to fear of retaliation, social stigma, lack of evidence, fear of loss of reputation, low self-confidence, and fear of job loss or lack of awareness.
He defined all the different kinds of harassment and the law and sections to register a complaint against the culprit. He also encouraged the womenfolk to come forward to register the complaint without any reluctance and asked the people for cooperation and encouragement of the victim to file a case because this whole process takes time and persistent efforts.
The Gender Specialist Humerah Balwan highlighted the importance of gender sensitization and bringing gender equality in society by actively empowering the thought of the people and the children at an early age.
“Parents can play a key role in framing the mindset of their children . Gender sensitization should begin at home by changing the attitude of patriarchal society and incorporating thoughts free from gender disparity,” she added.
Staff and Para legal volunteers of the District Legal Services Authority, Shaki One Stop centre Doda, Social Welfare Department officials and workers of ICDS were also present in the program. The proceedings of the program were conducted by Dr. Sanya Khan, Gender Specialist, Mission shakti Doda.