The Assistant Labour Minister for Labour Standards, Atty. Welma Baye Sampson says the Ministry is working to ensure employers in the country have a clearly defined policy on sexual harassment to protect women and men from harassment in work places.
She says the Ministry is asserting efforts aimed at ensuring women’s rights are protected both within the Ministry and other workplaces across the country noting, “The protection of women rights is the heart of the Pro-Poor Agenda for Prosperity and Development (PAPD).”
“We have been creating awareness on the rights of women at work, including pay for maternity leave, nursing breaks, and flexible work schedule for nursing mothers at work.”
According to a press release, Assistant Minister Sampson spoke recently at program marking installation of officers of the Ministry of Labour Woman Association or MOLWA in Monrovia. The Day also coincided with the observance of the International Women’s Day, celebrated here under the theme: Think Equal, Build Smart and Innovate for Change. National Theme: Gender Equality for Innovators and not the Consumers of Innovation.
“You will agree with me that innovation is dominant. People use the internet to degrade women, gossip, throw hints and shared degrading articles and nude photos about women. Innovation is shaping and changing the way we live as a people and we have to be intentional about its use to positively impact the lives of women and girls. That means, it is time we get involved in making sure that women and girls are not only consumers of innovation, but take our place as innovators.”
She admonished the newly inducted leadership and members of the MOLWA that it is time they build network, a cycle that will be a support system to fellow women noting that “women group should not be a space of gossip, envy and jealousy instead, it should be a space of support and learning.”
Atty. Sampson added that dissemination of information among women should no longer be an issue when they can create a whatApp group chat to get messages across. “Leaving work early because of unexpected period needs not to be an issue when a woman can feel comfortable with a support group and send an emergency alert requesting a sanitary pad from a sister within the network.”
“Our workplace should be a safe haven. Sexual harassment should not be the basis we change our career path. When we feel we are being sexually harassed, we should not hesitate to speak about it. We should look in the face of our harasser and say stop. If you are too shy, get a sister involved, share with your network and they will find a decent way to approach the harasser.
She called on women in the country to design and execute solutions that can address the unique women and girls from the creation of decent work to the delivery of products, services and infrastructure for women in all walks of life.
Those inducted were: Mrs. Deborah Davis Gray, President, Mrs. Dorian L. Kanneh, Vice President, Mrs. Nyama Gborkorquelle Dorko, Secretary and Ms. Enad Harris, Financial Secretary.
Several female employees and members of the Ministry of Labour Women Association received certificates of appreciation for their dedicated service and their commitment to the promotion of programs at the Ministry.
Those certificated were: Atty. Yvette Freeman, Deputy Minister for Administration, Ms. Sanniah Kollie, outgoing President of the Association, Madam Ophelia Tarm, former VP, Mrs. Irena R. Sherif, and former SG. And Madam Rita Cooper, Financial Sec.
The Assistant Labour Minister cautioned the incoming leadership to study the issues outlined and be on the frontline to engage women and girls; educating them on the importance of using innovation and technology to address issue affecting women and girls. Press Release