Well, the international women’s day is around the corner March 8th. And i have started noticing the buzz around it. Soon there would be talks, articles, posts, photos, celebrations, events being shared. And then the day will end. I am not sure with all this hoop hulla is the real change evident. I was having a discussion with my very well accomplished doctorate scientist sister who was coming to Delhi for a MHRD event in a college about ‘Women in Science’, and i told her you should refuse to do this event, there is no point. And she gave me a good lecture on leaky pipelines, trailblazers, out of sight stuff. I asked her will your lecture fix leaky pipelines, she said thats not her job, and then i went all Gandhi on her, and we both decided to not talk to each other. [i have lost the count of our fights, she was born to fight with me]
I am an advocate of gender neutrality, i do not like when some one congratulates me or wishes me a happy women’s day. There is nothing i did there. I was born with it, like many other. Its just biology. And trust me, most of us would exchange this biology any day, nobody likes those 5 days every month of mood swings, and non stop chocolates and unbearable pains. I have a special calendar in my phone to take care of those days and plan my schedule around it. Coming back to celebrating the Women’s Day.
I believe a true celebration would be, if you as an organization, as a company believe and practice -
a. Equal Pay.
b. Parental Leave Policy
c. Celebration of both Women, Men’s day, and if you want celebrate Children’s day as well, and Pet’s day
d. Is an equal oppurtunity employer not only in company’s website but in mindset as well
Pick any link, any article on gender pay gap, you will find for the same work, women are paid less. So if you believe in Celebrating Women’s day provide equal pay for the same work to your female employees as you do for male employees. And to my dear women folks, just wearing sarees on the day is not enough, if your organization doesn’t practice equal pay, figure out why is that so? And then woman up to the challenge so that your male counterparts are paid equal to you. Either bring them up to your level, or go down to their level[sarcasm intended]
Parental leave, Zomato did it. Why is so difficult to understand that both parents need leaves. I cannot stress it enough. There is a new series on Netflix called Babies watch it if you want. Scientists have found out that both genders produce the same level of oxytocin when they spend similar quality time with the baby. Oxytocin is the hormone of bonding. You can become a parent even if you donot have a biology of making it in your body and still need equal amount of leave to take care of this new addition in your life.
Writing, we are an equal oppurtunity employer is the need of the hour. There has been so much indiscriminate based on all possible biases one can think of, that it needs to be fixed. But practicing it, ensuring that every employee, every hire is fair is a task. And the soft skills required for it should be acquired, we aren’t born with it. I visited a neighbourhood slum area and found two girl children talking in good english. Immediately i developed a liking for them. I got them two books and a few clothes. Other kids lined up and demanded things from me, and i went back with a list of toys they all need. I realized how easy it was for me to develop bias. How difficult it must be for organizations to not develop it, and ensure the people don’t do that as well.
I will sign off by just saying this that if each one of us practice compassion, gratitude, kindness humanity will still have a chance. And i have learnt by my visit in the neighbourhood slum, those who had less were much happier, than those who had a lot. So maybe a bit of introspection can help us all. Let each day be a humane day. Be human first.