Labour welfare is a dynamic concept which changes with the change in many factors. Labour welfare is essential with a view to protecting the interest of employer and employee both. Labour welfare plays a vital role in the industrial sector of the country. Labour welfare has a wide impact on the employee and employer relationship which helps in reducing the changes of labour dispute.
Keywords: Labour, Welfare, Theories
The theories which lay down the foundation of labour welfare in India are:
- Religious Theory of Labour Welfare: Welfare activities are considered to be necessary under this theory on the basis of the prevailing religious principle and sentiments of the employer. This theory states that even God theory states that sharing for the human benefit is essential and the duty of one human being towards the other human beings. Therefore in the case of industry, an employer should have a sense of humanity towards the employee and their welfare. The religious theory lays down that selfish behavior is not entertained and the religion itself portrays the concept of humanity and welfare by a human for another human. Therefore an employer should work for the welfare of the employees and their welfare.
- Philanthropic Theory: According to this theory providing facilities like hygienic washrooms, canteen facilities, crèches etc constitutes adequate and good working conditions for workers. This theory is very common as it constitutes provision for social welfare measure. This principle is related to the principle of the religious theory of charity. This theory states that it is the duty and responsibility of rich and wealthy people to help the poor and underprivileged people of the society to grow and live their life with dignity.
- Trusteeship Theory: This theory works on the basic assumption that labour is not able to look after them. Therefore the employer is considered to be the trustee who should work for the benefit of the labour and establish various facilities and also provide benefits so that they can feed their families. According to this theory, an employer is the owner of the industrial establishment as well as he is responsible for the production activities of the industry, therefore, he should act as the trustee for the labour as beneficiary. Hence it is an implied duty of the trustee to provide facilities for the welfare of his beneficiary.
- Policing Theory of Labour Welfare: According to this theory, labour welfare is a legal and statutory responsibility of the employer, under which the employer is compelled to provide availability of minimum comforts to the workers like minimum wages, safety, and security. The State regulation, supervision, inspection of the industrial premises in such cases becomes very crucial. This theory also lays down that Government as an implied duty to enforce the measures in an industrial unit or factory or plant for the required level of welfare services and impose a penalty in case of non-compliance.
- Placating Theory: Employers promote welfare as a fruit of sustained efforts of the working class due to their pressure. According to this theory, management endorses welfare measures not as charity but as reward efforts on the part of the worker. Under this theory, Collective bargaining has been introduced for the benefit of the labour to have representation to address their concerns in an organized manner for the welfare of their own self. The employers fear the Trade unions rather than the strict legislations formed by the Government for labour welfare; hence it is the duty of the labour to keep their demand into an organized form in front of the employers for their systematic benefit.
- Efficiency/Functional Criterion: It attempts to relate additional expenditure on the welfare promoting activities and resultant increases in the productive efficiency of the workers. Every addition to the welfare promoting activity is found to pay rich dividends in the course of time.
- Public Relations Theory of labour Welfare: Hygienic, Clean and safe working conditions make a good positive working environment for the workers, visitors and the public. Good and Healthy activities which are done by the employer under the labour welfare scheme establishes a good public image which directly affects the goodwill of the specific industry ultimately which results in the creation of good and healthy public relation of the employer in the industrial atmosphere.
- Social Theory of Labour Welfare: The employers of the all the establishment and itself the establishment in recent times have a high level of social obligation in the society as well as in the eye of the law. This Theory signifies that an employer is morally bound to improve the conditions of the society in addition to improving the conditions of its employees. This theory signifies the interdependence of labour welfare on social security and social welfare.