Activists call for mainstreaming gender institutionally

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New Delhi, Apr 7 (UNI) Activists and intellectuals today called for creating processes within workplaces to cater to the needs of women to bring out their potential.

Coming together for the book release of a manual-- Engendering Workplaces: Framework for a Gender Policy'', they said there is a need to include men as partners and not competitors.

''The workplace in the Indian context is still dominated by men with the increasing presence of women.... but their needs have to be addressed. Only then would equality be achieved,'' Planning Commission member Syeeda Hameed said.

She said as all organisations valuer the contribution of women in the process of development and their importance in the work place efforts must be made to sustain their presence and maximise their potential.

The manual has been brought out by PRIA-- an NGO- in collaboration with Gender Community -UN S0lution Exchange and offer solutions to gender-related issues.

PRIA President Rajesh Tandon said changing organisational culture and practices requireD parallel changes in individual attitude and orientation.

''Mainstreaming gender institutionally and implementing the changes to achieve gender equality at workplace is very important.

Qualified and educated professionals often feel that they know everything about the two sexes working together. This implies significant unlearning in order to attain gender sensitisation,'' he said.

''We need to create mechanisms that support unlearning to happen, though it is a difficult process. Gender may not make bottom-line sense but makes well being sense for employees,'' he added.

Expressing similar views, PRIA Director Martha Farrell said organisations play a role towards social transformation.

''For growth and development of the organisation and thereby society, the eneeds of both in the workplace have to be addressed,'' he added.

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