GENDER POLICY

1.0 POLICY STATEMENT

The Okomu Oil Company PLC (OOPC) is committed to maintaining a positive climate at work, in which individuals can work together in an environment free of all forms of violence, harassment, and discrimination on the basis of gender. OOPC strongly believes and supports gender equality and opposes any form of gender discrimination and violence at the workplace. The Company is therefore obligated in providing a safe work environment which is free from any kind of bias and harassment. The organization draws its source by upholding the constitutional mandate (section 17, 34, 35, Nigeria Constitution) and (Nigeria Labour Act 2004 section 73) to ensure the human rights of the people that are under its jurisdiction.

2.0 SCOPE

This policy applies to all employees, contractors (including temporary contractors and third party staff) of OOPC

3.0 POLICY REQUIREMENT

The Gender Committee at OOPC has been set up with an objective of providing men & women an appropriate complaint mechanism against any inequality issue or unwelcome behavior in any manner. The policy suggests mechanisms that are accessible and will ensure confidentiality. It also serves as a system to ensure the fair, accountable and representative procedures for redressal and resolution. This Policy also defines the Physical, Psychological and Emotional harassment, physical or verbal form)by any gender and the mechanisms of redressal through the Committee by looking at the specific structures, needs and imperatives in OOPC. However, for female members, Sexual harassment is guided by the definition of Sexual Harassment given by the Nigeria law.

4.0 OBJECTIVE
  • Okomu Oil Palm Company (OOPC) aims to fulfill its obligations under this policy by removing any barriers that prevent women from achieving equality and seek to protect the reproductive rights of women.
5.0 SCOPE
  • The policy applies to employees and contractors (including temporary contractors) of OOPC. This policy does not form part of any employee's contract of employment or contractor's services.
6.0 DEFINITIONS

Gender equality” means the equal rights, obligations, opportunities and liability of men and women in professional life, upon acquisition of education and participation other areas of social life; Equal treatment for men and women" means that there Shall be no discrimination whatsoever based on sex, either directly or indirectly;

  1. Direct discrimination based on sex” occurs where one person is treated less favorably on grounds of sex than another is, has been or would be treated in a comparable situation. Direct discrimination based on sex also means the less favorable treatment of a person in connection with pregnancy and childbirth, parenting, performance of family obligations or other circumstances related to gender, and sexual harassment;
  2. indirect discrimination based on sex” occurs where an apparently neutral provision, criterion or practice would put persons of one sex at a particular disadvantage compared with persons of the other sex unless that provision, criterion or practice is objectively justified by a legitimate aim, and the means of achieving that aim are appropriate and necessary;
  3. Harassment has been defined under the categories of Psychological Physical and emotional. The following shall constitute Harassment
    • When unwelcome acts like any visual, verbal or physical conduct such loaded comments, remarks or jokes, emails, letters, phone calls, text messages, gestures, physical contact, stalking, display of a derogatory nature or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive environment
    • Any unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors or any conduct of a sexual nature (Verbal or nonverbal conduct)
    • Any action or comment/s (racial, ethnic, religious etc)which has the purpose or effect of substantially interfering with an individual's work performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working environment.
7.0 GUIDELINES
  • To espouse the cause of the right to gender equality and right to dignified livelihood
  • To foster a social, physical and psychological environment that will enable employees to work productively.
  • Capacity building for gender sensitization: We will organize workshops, training programs and discussions for promoting and enabling a gender sensitive work culture. Also, regular trainings will be conducted on awareness and confidence building of field staff, with special focus on women staff.
  • Building skills and capacities on gender perspectives to enable greater participation of all sections of community in our programs will be one of our objectives in all programs.
  • This policy would implement the sexual harassment, child labour and female reproductive policies of the Company
8.0 ROLE OF THE GENDER COMMITTEE

The Committee's role will include of following:

  1. To play a preventive role by making efforts towards sensitization of the staff on gender issues by conducting periodic programs and in house workshops/gathering.
  2. To take cognizance of complaints about Harassment, conduct proper enquiries, provide assistance and redressal to the victims, recommend penalties and action against harasser, if required.
  3. Ensure Safety and equality at all levels at the workplace.
  4. To recommend arrangements for appropriate emotional, psychological and physical support in form of counseling and other assistance), if desired by the victim.
  5. Child care facilities to be provided by the growers and millers.
  6. Women to be allowed to breastfeed up to nine months before resuming chemical spraying or usage tasks
  7. Women to be given specific break times to enable effective breastfeeding
  8. The policy shall be reviewed annually.
9.0 PROCEDURES FOR REGISTERING COMPLAINTS

To follow OOPC procedure GP 27 (Grievance Procedure) attached.