United States Agency for International Development assists DISCOs in improving working conditions for women

Islamabad, July 03, 2013 (PPI-OT): In a milestone accomplishment, six government-owned power distribution companies (DISCOs) have adopted Protection Against Sexual Harassment in the Workplace Act 2010. The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Power Distribution Program has been tirelessly working with all nine DISCOs to provide a better working environment for its female staff. The program strives to provide women with the basic necessities at the workplace and also ensures the protection of their basic rights.

Women hardly make 1% of the workforce at DISCOs and are mostly confined to clerical and desk jobs. After USAID’s interventions targeted at the female staff of DISCOs, women are now aware of career paths in the energy sector and the retention ratio of these employees have greatly increased as more women are now seeking a career in the power distribution business.

Women already play a key role in Pakistan’s economy; strengthening their role in energy will create a real difference in national prosperity, therefore, USAID is making all efforts to increase women’s participation while creating a female-friendly environment in the energy sector.

To ensure a healthy work environment, USAID has successfully organized gender equity training sessions in all nine DISCOS. USAID has also informed the authorities regarding the Protection Against Harassment at Workplace Act 2010 and seven DISCOS have successfully adopted the policy.

The USAID Power Distribution Program has successfully set up a daycare facility along with a rest area at Multan Electric Power Company (MEPCO). Women can bring their children to work and visit them in their spare time, while they are under the supervision of trained specialists.

A similar rest area facility has been set up at Peshawar Electric Supply Company. Customer service centres in six DISCOS and Management Information System Data Centre in one DISCO have also been renovated, providing a better environment for female Staff. “The Customer Service Centre established by USAID has created a soft image of GEPCO to our employees as well as consumers and this office has become a role model for other offices.” Chief Engineer/Customer Service Director, GEPCO

For more information, Contact:
Zia Ur Rehman
Communications Manager
USAID Power Distribution Program
Islamabad, Pakistan
Tel: +92 51 2270911-916 Ext (106)
Fax: +92 51 8312997
Mobile: +92-334 513 0 950
Email: zrehman@pdip.pk
Web: www.pdip.pk

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