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Internal Complaints Committee - POSH Act and Training

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Internal Complaints Committee - POSH Act and Training 

An Internal Complaints Committee (ICC) is a body to which an employee can make a complaint against any other employee, superior, or employer. It also provides a mechanism for redressal of sexual harassment complaints.

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An ICC is constituted by the employer in accordance with the provisions of the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013. The committee must have at least one woman member.

The Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013 requires that every workplace should have an ICC. The purpose of this law is to prevent sexual harassment at workplaces and provide a safe working environment for women employees by providing them with a mechanism to make complaints about sexual harassment.

An ICC committee should be constituted as per the provisions of Section 4(1)(d) of the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace Act 2013. The committee must comprise independent members who are not subordinate to the alleged harasser or his/her direct supervisor; employees from different departments other than where the alleged harasser works; persons from outside your organization who do not have any business relationship with your company; persons who possess special knowledge or expertise

Internal Complaints Committee Format

An Internal Complaints Committee is a committee of the organization to which complaints of sexual harassment can be made. The committee should comprise at least three members, of which at least one member should be a woman. The committee should also have an independent member, who is not part of the organization.

Members of Internal Complaints Committee

  • Presiding Officer or Chairperson
  • Two Internal Member
  • One External Member

The role of an Internal Complaints Committee is to receive complaints from employees and other stakeholders, investigate them and redress them where possible. It also provides counseling services to victims and witnesses of sexual harassment cases.

An Internal Complaints Committee should be formed in organizations that have more than 10 workers on their rolls. The law mandates that all public sector companies must have an IC committee. Private companies with over 50 employees must have one too.

Who can approach ICC for help?

Any female employee (student, faculty, or staff)

What are the possible actions if the respondent is found guilty?

The ICC committee (Internal Complaints Committee) shall initiate appropriate action against the respondent, which may include:

  • A formal reprimand;
  • Suspension from work, with or without pay;
  • Demotion in rank; and/or
  • Termination of service.
  • Any other relevant legal actions

Responsibilities of Internal Complaints Committee

The internal Complaints Committee is a body that is established to deal with the complaints of sexual harassment.

The main responsibility of this committee is to investigate and settle the complaints of sexual harassment made by the employees against any other employee. This committee also looks into cases where an employee has been found guilty of violating the company policy or rules.

Responsibilities: 

  • Investigate any complaint made by an employee against another employee for violation of company policies or rules. 
  • Decide on whether there should be any disciplinary action taken against the accused employee after the investigation. 
  • This committee must meet at least once every quarter in order to discuss pending issues, complaints, and grievances raised by employees with respect to the human resource department or manager concerned in writing within fifteen days from receipt thereof

Scope of Internal Complaints Committee (ICC) Training

Internal Complaints Committee training is a mandatory requirement for all employees who are required to deal with sexual harassment complaints at the workplace. The purpose of Internal Complaints Committee training is to provide information on the process of handling sexual harassment cases, roles and responsibilities of the committee members, and complaint procedures, and also provide them with an understanding of the legal provisions governing sexual harassment at the workplace.

  • The scope of Internal Complaints Committee Training is to provide comprehensive training on the relevant provisions of the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act- 2013, Rules, Complaint Mechanism, and Procedure under the Act (POSH Act).
  • The Training aims to provide a clear understanding of the concepts and principles related to the prevention of sexual harassment at the workplace, its redressal mechanism, the role of the Internal Complaints Committee (ICC), its composition and functions, rights and responsibilities of complainants, respondents, and witnesses as well as employers. The course also discusses legal procedures involved in handling cases by ICCs including complaints against its own members.
  • The course will also provide an opportunity to discuss various other issues like sexual harassment at the workplace in public transport, the banking sector, etc., working women security measures, women-friendly work environment policies in the private sector, etc., which are important for creating a safe work environment for women workers at all levels

What is the POSH Act (Prevention Of Sexual Harassment) Act)?

The Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act was passed in 2013. It is a law to prevent sexual harassment of women in the workplace and to provide relief and compensation to victims. The Act aims at providing protection to women against sexual harassment in the workplace.

The act defines what constitutes sexual harassment as well as the responsibilities of employers as well as employees with regard to prevention. It also provides for the establishment of a Central Complaints Committee at every organization with more than 10 employees and for the constitution of a Local Complaints Committee in every district. The act further provides for the constitution of the Internal Complaints Committee at every public office or department.

The act provides for penal action against those found guilty under it.

Posh Consultant & Anti Sexual Harassment Training

The Posh Consultant & Anti-Sexual Harassment Training is a program designed to assist you in developing the critical skills and confidence necessary to manage issues of sexual harassment. The Posh Consultant provides anti-sexual harassment training that is tailored to your organization's needs, budget, and culture. The program can be delivered in person or online.

The program consists of a one-hour presentation and a half-hour interactive exercise followed by a discussion period. The presenter uses real-life examples and exercises to illustrate the types of behaviors that may constitute sexual harassment and what employers can do to prevent it.

The topics covered in this program include:

  • The definition of sexual harassment, including what it is and what it isn’t
  • The legal requirements for preventing and responding to sexual harassment
  • The typical stages of a sexual harassment complaint
  • The roles of managers and employees in addressing complaints of sexual harassment
  • How to create a “no tolerance” policy that effectively addresses and prevents future incidents
  • How to respond if someone reports they've experienced sexual harassment

Internal Complaints Committee Members Training & Certification

The ICC Members' Training and Certification Program is designed to provide the knowledge and skills needed to fulfill the responsibilities of a member of an Internal Complaints Committee (ICC). The training will also provide an understanding of how to operate in a sensitive and professional manner. The program covers topics such as:

  • How to conduct investigations, interviews, and hearings;
  • How to assess evidence, including credibility assessment and weighing evidence;
  • How to develop recommendations, including what kind of discipline may be warranted;
  • How to share information with complainants, respondents, other staff members, and other stakeholders; and
  • How to communicate effectively with all parties involved in the process.

This portion of the site is for informational purposes only. The content is not legal advice. The statements and opinions are the expression of author, not corpseed, and have not been evaluated by corpseed for accuracy, completeness, or changes in the law.

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Author
Dheeraj Budhori
Dheeraj Budhori, an Internet Researcher & SEO, started his Optimizer journey in 2019. His top executive is his passion for search engine analysis & interest in understanding User psychology