WCD Minister Smt Maneka Sanjay Gandhi today launched a comprehensive SHe-Box online complaint Management System for women working in both public and private organizations to lodge complaints of sexual harassment at workplace. The SHe-Box was launched in New Delhi today to ensure the effective implementation of the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act (the SH Act), 2013.
The new SHe-Box portal offers the facility of making online complaints of sexual harassment at workplace to all women employees in the country including government and private employees. Those who have already filed a written complaint with the concerned Internal Complaint Committee (ICC) or Local Complaint Committee (LCC) constituted under the SH Act are also eligible to file their complaint through this portal.
Launching the online facility, the WCD Minister, Smt Maneka Sanjay Gandhi said that this is a historic step since it is probably the first ever time that the government of any country has launched an online portal to receive complaints of sexual harassment at workplace. The government is completely committed to provide a safe and fair environment to working women. It is for this reason that the WCD Ministry has made efforts to make the setting up of Internal Complaint Committees mandatory at all workplaces, the Minister explained. She said that the WCD Ministry has also produced a manual and has organized training programmes for Internal Complaint Committees and in the next significant step, the SHe-Box has been launched to provide platform to aggrieved women to make their complaints directly so that suitable action is taken to redress their grievances. These complaints will be monitored by the WCD Ministry, Smt Maneka Gandhi assured.
SHe-Box portal is an effort to provide speedier remedy to women facing sexual harassment at workplace. Once a complaint is submitted to the portal, it will be directly sent to the ICC/LCC of the concerned employer. Through this portal, WCD as well as complainant can monitor the progress of inquiry conducted by the ICC/LCC. This is a proactive step taken by MWCD in the wake of the worldwide social media campaign #MeToo, where women have related their experience of facing sexual harassment and abuse. The portal can be accessed at the link given below:
Link to the SHe-Box portal: http://shebox.nic.in/
Users of SHe-Box also have the option of interacting with Ministry of WCD through this portal, with an assured time-bound response. The portal also provides information on 112 institutions empaneled by MWCD to conduct training/workshops on the issue of sexual harassment at the workplace. It also has the option for resource persons and institutions willing to contribute to training on this subject in various organisations to submit their applications. SHe-Box will provide a platform to these empanelled institutes/organisations to share their capacity building activities with the Ministry which in turn will be able to monitor the activities of these institutes/organizations so empanelled from across the country.
The Ministry has published a Handbook and Training Module on the SH Act to provide information about the provisions of the Act in easy to use practical manner. The private organizations are encouraged to customize the Training Module as per their extant service rules and disciplinary procedures prescribed therein.
Ensuring the dignity and safety of women must be first priority for any digital society. Towards realisation of the vision of the Digital India programme, the Ministry is promoting utilisation of information and communication technology to achieve the goal of gender equality and women empowerment. It is an effort to utilise the digital space to enable speedier response to the complaints of women against sexual harassment at workplace.