Accra- Thursday June 29, 2023: The Office of the Head of the Local Government Service (OHLGS) in partnership with the GIZ Governance for Inclusive Development Programme and the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) organised a one-day knowledge and experience sharing workshop on Anti-Sexual Harassment Policy (ASHP).

The workshop was held at the Coconut Groove Hotel in Accra on Thursday June 29, 2023, to sensitise participants on the possible directives towards the development of the Policy for the Local Government Service (LGS).

The Coordinator for GIZ, Mr. Charles Othniel Abbey said the GIZ has extended its first share of support to the GRA to develop a Gender Policy and Implementation Strategy with one of the key recommendations being the development of an Anti-Sexual Harassment Policy as well as Communication Strategy for organisations.  He stressed the need to extend similar support to the Local Government Service through the learning curb for which the workshop was organised. He emphasised that the workshop was for the LGS to benchmark the GRA on the policy and adopt the best practices arising from their experiences in order to better appreciate the full support from the GIZ. He expressed his appreciation to the LGS and hoped the training would be fruitful.

The Head of Service, Ing Dr. Nana Ato Arthur, commended the German Government’s Inclusive Development Programme to support such a laudable initiative yet sensitive topical issue in the corporate environment. He reiterated that the LGS considers any form of sexual harassment as unlawful and such conducts will not be countenanced.

According to the Head of Service, recent research conducted by the National Association of Local Authorities of Ghana (NALAG) on the challenges facing women Administrators in Local Government highlighted some prominent issues of sexual harassment where some laudable recommendations such as the need for the Service to develop a robust Anti-Sexual Harassment Policy to curb the issues.

He said though the OHLGS has over the years developed protocols to guide and support the work and conduct of staff of the Service, the provisions are however not fully consolidated and do not address the issue of sexual harassment in a comprehensive, integrated and holistic manner.

Consequently, he said, it has become necessary for the Service to seek support to develop a more robust, integrated and holistic policy that will address the issue of sexual harassment comprehensively in the Service. He therefore entreated GIZ to expedite action to aid the Service develop a comprehensive Gender Policy to address the issues of gender and gender-related matters to review most of the LGS existing protocols, especially the Human Resource Operational Manual that was developed in 2013.

A Human Resource Manager from the GRA, Mrs Eunice Hayford in a presentation took participants through the GRA Country Sexual Harassment Policy. The presentation revealed a number of methods and strategies imbibed for the successful roll out of the policy. They included participatory data gathering processes such as focus group discussions, online individual survey which she said was to purposely analyse and identify the root causes of sexual harassment and gender equality for further recommendations for developing and implementing the Anti-Sexual Harassment Policy.

She said the GRA Identified some operational procedures for the implementation of the policy for which she recommended the LGS to adopt, a well thought through communication strategy and full incorporation in the communication and public Affairs work plan.

The presentation delivered by the GIZ representative, Mr. Gary Bonny featured an overview of the support to the LGS for the development of the policy, their mandate, the rationale for the support to LGS and the update on their relationship with the LGS.

In attendance at the workshop were the Management Team of the OHLGS, selected representatives from GIZ and GRA as well as some staff of the OHLGS.

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