In an increasingly diverse world like ours, Janaagraha recognizes the individuality of each of its employees. Therefore, the organization strives to create an environment for everyone to flourish. While inclusive policies are vital to providing benefits concerning the diverse set of employees, it is the other myriad of daily activities that help us feel comfortable using these benefits. For example, spaces held for conversations around Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) give people a choice to be vulnerable and share their stories. These shared experiences help the organization learn to grow on the inclusiveness front.
The best example here is how our policy on menstruation leaves recently expanded to include a lot more. In the earlier policy, menstruating employees were limited to, additional monthly work from home (WFH) days. Recently, we remodeled it to include other sick leaves along with the existing WFH benefits. In addition, the new policy addresses menstruation and other reproductive health concerns, including PCOD, endometriosis, and menopause. This careful inclusion of every possible concern in the policy was possible because every person affected by the same got a chance to voice their opinions.
Similarly, our policy on the Prevention of Sexual Harassment (POSH) at the workplace is now gender-neutral. While these are just a few instances, they reflect the organization’s diverse and inclusive approach. This sets a pace to adapt diversity and inclusivity to other policies when the need arises.
We are all humans. We all come with our unconscious biases, our blind spots; therefore, it is ever more important to be ready to change and adapt to our learning journeys. At Janaagraha, we try to listen and adapt to the best of our capabilities. We firmly believe that we are all a product of the language we speak, the conversations we have every day, and the thoughts we put into our work and life.
In recent years, we have devised mechanisms dedicated to furthering an inclusive culture in the organization, built on these principles. To nudge ourselves to think a step beyond our realities, the D&I committee shares weekly bits around associated topics. To give people the space to reflect and ponder on issues of interest, we run D&I informal hours where we choose topics to read on or watch a movie on and bring our reflections back to the larger group.
At least one member of every team in the organization is a designated gender champion. They have voluntarily taken up the responsibility to ensure inclusive language, gender data disaggregation at work, future work proposals, and their integration with the gender lens, ensuring every team member feels heard and is not hesitating to avail policy benefits meant for their good.
Although a starting point, such mechanisms are helping us keep D&I at the forefront while constantly striving to do better. Our dream is to one day ensure inclusion eventually becomes the fabric of being in the organization in every way.
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