Workplaces with women on night shift to provide creche and canteen

The draft Occupational Safety, Health and Working Conditions (Central) Rules, 2020 (“Rules”) have come up with new rules that ensure women's safety. As per Rule 67 of the Rules, now besides transportation, workplaces including factories and construction firms need to provide a creche on the premises for women who have given their consent to work after 7 pm. They also have to ensure the workplace has good lighting, adequate sanitation, and canteen facilities.

Rule 67 also focus on women's health as they mandate that no employer should knowingly make a woman work in any establishment during the first six (6) weeks following the day of her delivery, miscarriage or medical termination of pregnancy.

Section 24 of the Occupational Safety Health Code 2020 allows women employees to work at night, that is, beyond 7 pm and upto 5 am, subject to conditions relating to safety, holidays, working hours and their consent. The respective state government can prohibit the employment of women if the operations are dangerous for their health and safety.