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New measures for preventing and combating gender-based harassment and harassment at the workplace

On 17 October 2023, the Romanian Government Decision no. 970/2023 approving the Methodology on preventing and combating gender-based harassment and harassment at the workplace (the “Methodology“) was published in the Official Gazette of Romania no. 939. The Guidelines on preventing and combating gender-based harassment and harassment at the workplace (the “Guidelines“) are annexed to the Methodology and form an integral part of the Methodology.

▸ The Methodology

The Methodology aims to establish a common approach for public and private sector employers with regard to legislation concerning the prevention and combating of gender-based harassment and harassment at the workplace. The Methodology also aims to provide a working tool for equal opportunities experts/technicians and employees with responsibilities in the field of equal opportunities and treatment between women and men.

According to the Methodology, the main obligations for employers are the following:
Implementation of the Methodology, adapted to the specific situation of the employer, based on the Guidelines;
Establishment of an internal procedure for the promotion, including the appointment of decision-making positions, of the management and supervisory boards of private companies;
Training of employees in order to raise awareness and prevent harassment;
Informing and training all employees by organizing annual training courses regarding the provisions of the Methodology;
Dissemination of the Methodology through all internal means of communication/information of employees;
Introduction of the provisions of Government Ordinance no. 137/2000 on the prevention and sanctioning of all forms of discrimination and Law no. 202/2002 on equal opportunities and treatment between women and men in the Internal Regulation;
Prohibiting and sanctioning any actions that may lead to psychological harassment at the workplace or on the basis of gender.

▸ The Guidelines

Public and private sector employers are obliged to implement the Guidelines. On the basis of the Guidelines, each employer can develop its own internal guidelines for preventing and combating gender-based harassment and harassment at the workplace, adapted to the specific working conditions, in accordance with the deadlines and principles set out in the Guidelines.

The chapters of the Guidelines are as follows:
Guiding Principles;
Legal framework;
Purpose/Objectives of the Guidelines;
Applicability of the Guidelines;
Definitions (e.g., definition of harassment, examples of harassment);
Roles and responsibilities (e.g., responsibilities of the person in charge/the committee responsible for receiving and dealing with harassment cases);
Complaint/referral and harassment resolution procedure;
Sanctions;
Monitoring and evaluation of the implementation of the Guidelines.

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