Global Anti-Harassment Policies Vs. Local Laws – A perspective!

Today’s global workplaces have undergone a dramatic shift in terms of culture, experiences and expectations. Many Organizations have taken it upon themselves to ensure their workplaces are free from harassment of any form. A pertinent question in this era of global operations then, is about the framing of policies, reporting procedures and redressal mechanisms, which comply both with the organization’s home country or Global Headquarters and the host-country. Having said so, it is not only about the ability to understand the different obligations under the specific laws of each jurisdiction, but also to realise that harassment is just as much about culture as well. The challenge at an organizational level is to make easy to understand workplace anti-harassment policies and training modules that bring out local considerations.

While organizations strive to align with a global approach to eradicate harassment of any kind at the workplace, it becomes equally important to continually refine their own approach to prevent discrimination and thereby promote diversity and inclusion.

Here are a few thoughts as you revisit and sharpen your anti-harassment policies:

  • What works best? – An organization-wide global/group anti-harassment policy or a provision in the global code of conduct or policies aligned with the local or host-country laws?
  • Are your policies and redressal mechanisms compliant to the Local laws and norms?
  • Does the global approach account for local mandates and nuances? Are they culturally appropriate?
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