Friday, May 30, 2014

Stop child abuse….make your employees aware..

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Pankaj Pande & Sweta Pande are working with IT firm & staying in plush locality in Pune. This couple has been arrested on charges of child labour and allegedly torturing a 12-year-old boy. Police also confirmed that the boy's body bore brutal marks of physical abuse.  The minor boy was brought from native placed to take care of couple’s child. However this boy was forced to perform the home chores.  

As mentioned in the report, Dr Anuradha Sahasrabudhe, Director of Childline Pune, said, "It is a known fact that children are employed as domestic help. They stay with the family, have to be available for work 24x7, and are at the mercy of their owners completely.

Now put your child in the place of this 12-Year –old boy and what will be your reaction? Pankaj Pande and Sweta Pande must be qualified and educated. They may also be aware what is wrong and what is right. This couple is not the first example, there are lot of examples where poor children are brought as a domestic help, they are tortured and abused over petty issues. And what was the cost couple was paying, food & hardly Rs. 2,000/-!

This is illegal and inhuman. I think law will take care of this couple and there will be huge impact on the child. Such children are forced to move out of the system and such couples make them criminals when they are grown…

I am curious to know what action this IT firm will take against the monsters.            

I think, if your employees are ethical and respect humanity, then only the organization can be ethical. Your code of business conduct should also include such issues.

Somebody may argue that it is the personal matter of employees, but as an organization, will you allow your employees to trade drugs, involve in murders and theft? Will you allow your employees to take bribe? I think you will not…. It is not the personal matter of employees. This is not only the reputation issue but also the commitment of the organization to follow the law of the land & do the business in an ethical way.     

There are responsible organizations which carry regular audit of suppliers and vendors to ensure that their partners are also carry the business in fair manner and they are not involved in illegal activities like Child Labour, Bonded Labour.  But when this comes to the employees, actions are taken after the incidents.

I think, companies can play the active role to stop such malpractices. This should follow with sensitization and awareness on what is right and what is wrong.  Making employees aware on the issues and if they still indulge such malpractices enforcing consequence management policy will also help your organization to set the example.

What do you say?

(Views expressed in this article are personal.) 

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