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Cinemas, Malls to stay open 24/7: Cabinet permits Night Shift for Women

The successful implementation of the Act depends on states, as the cabinet is only an advisory to state governments

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Shopping mall in India. Image source: worldbase9.com
  • The bill is expected to open the floodgates to various employment opportunities
  • The model law will also empower women by providing them with an opportunity to work on night shifts
  • It has a provision for five paid festival holidays, apart from the national holidays

The cabinet on Wednesday, June 29, cleared that it will allow malls, shops, cinema theatres to operate 24/7, throughout the year.

The move which can add thousands of additional skilled jobs is also seen as an effective way to encourage employment. The bill will also empower women by providing them with an opportunity to work on night shifts, given mandatory cab services and other workplace facilities for them.

In a statement, Labour and Employment minister said, “Women to be permitted during the night shift- if the provision of shelter, restroom, ladies toilet, adequate protection of their dignity and transportation etc. exists.”

Finance minister Arun Jaitley said, the bill intends to end the “protective discrimination” that limited employment opportunities for women.

However, the government clarified that the bill’s success will depend on the states, iterating that it only acts as an advisory to state governments.

Labour Secretary Shankar Aggarwal told The Hindu, “We will send it to the States immediately. The model law will be a ready made material for the State governments as this has taken shape after several rounds of extensive consultation within various ministries and the Cabinet.”

The bill has also proposed to exempt highly-skilled professionals like those in information technology sector or bio-technology from a daily nine-hour shift and has allowed them weekly 48 working hours.

It has also put forward a provision for five paid festival holidays, apart from the national holidays.

The law also brings various sectors (except factories) like printing, banking, insurance, stocks and shares brokerage, and “any other public amusement” which are currently not covered under the Factories Act 1948, under it. Even the small establishments that employ 10 or more workers will be taken care of in this Act, reported The Hindu.

The decision is viewed to bring parity in the legislative process and will even bring e-commerce companies under the labour law ambit.

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  • Vrushali Mahajan

    Yes, this will indeed increase the employment opportunities and night shifts for women would make them independent and courageous

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Revive Bill Helping Native American Women: Alaska Senator

Attorney Gloria Allred, who represents the Greywind family, told The Associated Press on Friday that the bill asks for "a minimal level of accountability''

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USA, Native
Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, speaks after an order withdrawing federal protections for countless waterways and wetland was signed, at EPA headquarters in Washington, Dec. 11, 2018. VOA

Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski said she plans to reintroduce a bill intended to help solve crimes against Native Americans. The bill received unanimous Senate approval after being introduced by North Dakota Sen. Heidi Heitkamp but was blocked by the outgoing chairman of the House Judiciary Committee.

Goodlatte stops bill

Virginia Rep. Bob Goodlatte said he agreed with the intent of Heitkamp’s bill, which sought to expand tribal access to federal crime databases, set standards for law enforcement’s response to cases of missing or slain Native Americans, and instruct the Justice Department to increase its data collection on crimes against Native Americans.

But he said the bill would have hurt some agencies that have no link to tribal communities because they wouldn’t be able to compete for Justice Department grants that the bill sought to create, The Roanoke Times reported.

USA,  native
Sen. Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D., attends her last hearing with the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs as they examine concerns about investigations into the deaths and disappearance of Native American women, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Dec. 12, 2018. VOA

Goodlatte, a Republican who is retiring after 13 terms in office, said only a limited number of law enforcement organizations are eligible for those funds “so every other law enforcement organization in America is opposed to it, and the Fraternal Order of Police and groups like that because they’re getting a cut in order to do that.”

With the House adjourned until further notice, it appears that the measure known as Savanna’s Act will expire at the end of the year. Murkowski, also a Republican, has said she will take up the measure when lawmakers return to Washington.

“It’s disappointing that one Republican member of Congress blocked Savanna’s Act from passing this year,” Heitkamp, a Democrat, said in a statement. “But fortunately, Rep. Goodlatte won’t be around to block it in the new Congress. I’ve talked with Sen. Murkowski about Savanna’s Act and I’m so proud that she will reintroduce my bill in the new year.”

USA, Native
House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte, R-Va., answers reporters’ questions in the Rayburn House Office Building in Washington, July 13, 2018. VOA

Bill named for slain woman

The bill is named for Savanna Greywind, a slain North Dakota woman whose baby was cut from her womb.

Also Read: U.S. Midterm Election See Muslim American Women Making History

Attorney Gloria Allred, who represents the Greywind family, told The Associated Press on Friday that the bill asks for “a minimal level of accountability” and the notion that it is too onerous for law enforcement is “absurd.”

“If that’s the case then this bill should be introduced as is and let them come and testify before Congress about why they don’t want an incentive for providing the appropriate data that is needed and that this bill requires,” Allred said. “Let’s see who they are. If there are any they shouldn’t be hiding behind some elected official.” (VOA)