Ergonomic study on occupational wellbeing and womenness issues of Assam police

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The current study was undertaken to access the issues specifically faced by the women-police in a male dominated job and to look into possible remedial measures with objectives 1) to understand the occupational stress factors and wellbeing issues experienced by Assam police force in their respective workplace with specific reference to convenience facilities that are provided to them while they are on duty, 2) to examine the possibilities of ergonomic design interventions for the existing work and workplace, 3) to address the major inconveniences faced in workplace with specific reference to women-ness issues and 4) to evaluate the impact of implementation of the said interventions on the occupational stress factors and wellbeing issues. Three Police stations in Assam India, namely a) All Women Police Station and b) Common Police Station in Guwahati metropolitan area of lower Assam and at c) Tinsukia District of upper Assam were selected for base study. For comparison, a similar enquiry was made with d) a police station located in Hangzhou, China. Inspite of large all India demand, in Assam policewomen is very less in number. There is only one all-women police station in Guwahati and all others are deployed as and whenever required basis spread over in all police stations in Assam. On-location study revealed that there is a considerable amount of on-job stress. It aggravates with lack of basic amenities in police stations and on duty outside. Questionnaire survey and direct observations made it confirmed that police stations require visitor’s area, job-specific furniture and work accessories, rest rooms, hygienic washrooms, and specifically child care facility and facility for pregnant woman. Mobile utility van was opined as very important for duties in extreme times (mob handling, curfew etc.,) and also at night. Based on findings, a preliminary 2-D layout plans (with all facilities mentioned above) for all women police station and mobile utility van was proposed. Some of the suggestion made during the study was implemented and found satisfactory. Policewomen station in China was observed well-equipped with basic amenities, although they also lack child care facilities and provisions for pregnant women. They have well-equipped mobile utility Van, but that also lacks specific provisions for women. The study scopes for realistically expedient for competent government authorities for revisiting the policies for improving and promoting women status in police service.
Supervisor: Debkumar Chakrabarti