The PoSH Act entails all the basic norms for empanelment of external members in the Internal Complaints Committee at any organisation. The law states that the external member must be a person with reasonable experience of handling the cause of the working women. The said person could be from an NGO working for women or a PoSH lawyer.
Consequences of Non-Empanelment of External Member
- If a company doesn’t empanel external members in its internal committee then it won’t be considered legitimate. It could also invite non-compliance related actions from the government against the said organisation.
- Non-compliance of PoSH law could invite hefty fines being imposed on the company. Repeated violations could lead to cancellation of the license of the company.
Criteria for External Member Empanelment
The perspective external must possess the subsequent qualities:
- The candidate must have a thorough understanding of the PoSH law and should possess relevant experience in dealing with complaints of sexual harassment at workplace.
- The external member should have the skills and understand how to address complaints from female employees. They should be free from any preconceived bias before starting investigation.
- Preferably the person should be a lawyer working with an NGO or consultancy specialising in work related to women’s cause. The said candidate must be reputable and do not have any pending cases against him/her.
- The candidate must have experience of communicating with the victims and instigators. This helps them to efficiently handle the cases related to PoSH at work.
How to Hire an External Member to ICC
- Organisations could invite applications for hiring an external member by listing the eligibility criteria as per PoSH law. They can then select candidates who meet the criteria for in-person meetings.
- Companies can also go for a professional PoSH lawyer who can also train the Internal committee members on the nuances of the PoSH act. The said member can also organise PoSH training for employees. This will serve the dual purpose of PoSH training and compliance for the company.
- Before hiring, companies must make the candidate go through psychological tests to ensure they are free from any gender bias.
Author: Adv Sharlee Garg
Muds Management Private Limited
Mobile number: 91-9599653306
Email id: [email protected]
*The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist professional advice should be sought about your specific circumstances. The views expressed in this article are sole of the authors of this article*