Category Archives: Training

NEW LAW: DC To Require Sexual Harassment Training for Tipped Employees

Attention DC Employers, on October 23, 2018, the District of Columbia Mayor signed the “Tipped Wage Workers Fairness Amendment Act of 2018.”  While this law repealed Initiative 77 (discussed in NEW LAW – Washington DC Elimination of Tip Credit Repealed) and imposed new posting requirements on all DC employers (discussed in COMING SOON: New Posting Requirements for All DC Employers), the new law also imposes the following new requirements on employers of tipped employees:

Mandatory Sexual Harassment Training For Tipped Employees

Employers will be required to provide sexual harassment training to their tipped employees and managers.  This training must be either through a course developed by the Office of Human Rights (OHR) or from an OHR-certified provider. Continue reading NEW LAW: DC To Require Sexual Harassment Training for Tipped Employees

NEW LAW: New Requirements For Leave For Veterans In Massachusetts

On November 7, 2018, Massachusetts’  “BRAVE Act” (An Act Relative to Veterans Benefits, Rights, Appreciation, Validation and Enforcement) goes into effect.  This law changes an employer’s obligation  to grant leave to veterans on Veterans Day and Memorial Day.

Under the old law, which went into effect in 2016, employers were required to grant veterans time off on Veterans Day and Memorial Day to participate in an exercise, parade, or service in their community.  For employers with 50 or more employees, this time off was to be paid.

Under the new law, employers are required to provide Veterans with time off for  Veterans Day and Memorial Day as follows: Continue reading NEW LAW: New Requirements For Leave For Veterans In Massachusetts

NEW LAW: California To Require Human Trafficking Training In The Public Transportation Industry

California Governor Jerry Brown recently signed AB 2034 into law.  This law imposes new training requirements on certain employers in the public transportation industry relating to human trafficking.

This new law requires the following employers provide training relating to human trafficking to certain employees:

  • Operators of mass transit intercity passenger rail systems,
  • Operators of light rail systems, and
  • Bus stations.

The training must be 20 minutes long and must include the following information:

  • The definition of human trafficking, including sex trafficking and labor trafficking.
  • Myths and misconceptions about human trafficking.
  • Physical and mental signs to be aware of that may indicate that human trafficking is occurring.
  • Guidance on how to identify individuals who are most at risk for human trafficking.
  • Guidance on how to report human trafficking, including, but not limited to, national hotlines (1-888-373-7888 and text line 233733) and contact information for local law enforcement agencies that an employee may use to make a confidential report.
  • Protocols for reporting human trafficking when on the job.

The training can also include the following information and

  • Information and materials provided by the Department of Justice, the Blue Campaign of the federal Department of Homeland Security,
  • Information and material utilized in training Santa Clara County Valley Transit Authority employees, and
  • Information and materials provided by private nonprofit organizations that represent the interests of human trafficking victims, and the Department of Justice.

The training must be provided to all employees who

  • May interact with, or come into contact with, a victim of human trafficking or
  • Are likely to receive, in the course of their employment, a report from another employee about suspected human trafficking.

The initial human trafficking training must be provided to these employees by January 1, 2021.

NEW LAW: California To Require Human Trafficking Training In The Hospitality Industry

California Governor Jerry Brown recently signed SB 970 into law.  This law imposes new training requirements on employers in the hospitality industry relating to human trafficking.

This new law requires hotel/motel employers to provide training relating to human trafficking to certain employees.  The training must be 20 minutes long and must include the following information:

  • The definition of human trafficking and the commercial exploitation of children;
  • Guidance on how to identify individuals who are most at risk for human trafficking;
  • The difference between labor and sex trafficking;
  • Guidance on the role of hospitality employees in reporting and responding to this issue;
  • The contact information to the appropriate government industries (e.g. the National Human Trafficking Hotline, among others) and local law enforcement.

The training can also include information and materials provided by the Department of Justice, the Blue Campaign of the federal Department of Homeland Security, and various private nonprofit organizations that represent the interests of victims of human trafficking.

The training must be provided to all employees who have “reoccurring interactions with the public.”  This can include, but is not limited to the following types of employees:

  • employees who work in the reception area of the hotel,
  • housekeeping employees,
  • bellhops, and
  • employees who drive customers.

The initial human trafficking training must be provided to these employees by January 1, 2020 and every two years thereafter.  For new employees, this training must occur within six months of his or her employment in that role.

 

Good News For New York Employers – The Deadline To Provide Employees With Sexual Harassment Training Has Been Extended

On October 1, 2018, the New York State Division of Human Rights and Department of Labor published the final versions of the model anti-harassment training program and a model sexual harassment policy.  See our previous article (NEW GUIDANCE:  New York State Final Sexual Harassment Model Policy & Sexual Harassment Training Programs Released) for information about the final materials.

Employers are required to adopt and provide a copy of their sexual harassment prevention policy to all employees by October 9, 2018.  In addition, employers are required to display the new sexual harassment prevention policy poster in a prominent location in the workplace no later than October 9, 2018.

It is recommended that New York employers take immediate steps to comply with these new requirements.

The good news for employers, the deadlines to provide sexual harassment training have changed.

With respect to providing sexual harassment training to new hires, the final guidance materials remove the proposed  30-day deadline by which newly-hired employees must complete their first mandatory anti-harassment training.  Instead, there is not any set deadline and the State “encourages training of of new hires as soon as possible.”  (NOTE:  New York City employers will be required to train new hires in New York City within the first 90 days of employment).

With respect to providing sexual harassment training to existing employees, the final guidance materials postpone the deadline by which all employees in New York State must complete their first annual mandatory anti-harassment training to October 9, 2019.

NEW LAW: New Sexual Harassment Training Requirements For California Employers

California Governor Jerry Brown recently signed Senate Bill 1343 into law.  This new law makes several significant changes to California’s sexual harassment training requirements.

#1 Applies to more employers (and more employees too)

The most impactful change to the sexual harassment training requirements is that the requirement has been extended to smaller employers and to all employees.

Under the new law, California employers with five or more employees are required to provide sexual harassment training.  This training must be provided to both nonsupervisory and supervisory employees (including all temporary and/or seasonal employees) as follows:

  • Existing Nonsupervisory Employees: At least 1 hour of sexual harassment training by January 1, 2020.  Thereafter, sexual harassment training must be provided once every two years.
  • Nonsupervisory Employees hired after January 1, 2020: At least 1 hour of sexual harassment training within 6 months of the employee’s hire date.  Thereafter, sexual harassment training must be provided once every two years.
  • Temporary or Seasonal Employees: At least 1 hour of sexual harassment training within 30 calendar days after the hire date or within 100 hours worked if the employee will work for less than six months.
    • NOTE: If the employee is employed by a temporary services employer, the training must be provided by the temporary services employer, not the client.
  • Existing Supervisory Employees: At least two hours of sexual harassment training must be provided by January 1, 2020.  Thereafter, sexual harassment training must be provided once every two years.
    • NOTE: For employers who employ 50+ employees (i.e. those who were previously required to provide sexual harassment training to their supervisory employees), they are not required to comply with the January 1, 2020 training deadline.  Instead, they are still required to provide sexual harassment training to supervisory employees every two years.
  • Supervisory Employees hired after January 1, 2020: At least 2 hours of sexual harassment training within 6 months of the employee’s hire date.  Thereafter, sexual harassment training must be provided once every two years.

#2 DFEH Must Develop Online Training Program

Under the new law, the Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) is also required to develop two online training courses (one for supervisory employees and one for non-supervisory employees) and make them available on the DFEH website at no cost to the employer.  The programs must be interactive and include questions that a viewer is required to answer before he/she can continue the program.  Finally, the programs must be available in a variety of languages including English, Spanish, Simplified Chinese, Tagalog, Vietnamese, and Korean.

Employers are not going to be required to use these DFEH-developed training programs.

#3 What about the training program content?

It is important to note that the required content for the sexual harassment training programs has not changed.  This means that under existing (and the new law), the training programs for all employees must contain the following elements:

  • Information and practical guidance regarding the federal and state statutory provisions concerning the prohibition against and the prevention and correction of sexual harassment
  • Information and practical guidance regarding the federal and state statutory provisions concerning the remedies available to victims of sexual harassment in employment.
  • Practical examples aimed at instructing employees in the prevention of harassment, discrimination, and retaliation,
  • Information regarding abusive conduct (i.e. Bullying) and
  • Information regarding harassment based on gender identity, gender expression, and sexual orientation.

Also, the training must be presented by trainers or educators with knowledge and expertise in the prevention of harassment, discrimination, and retaliation.

Take Home For Employers

All California employers must take steps to ensure that they provide the newly required sexual harassment training to all employees.

NEW LAW: Maine’s New Sexual Harassment Training Requirements

Under the Maine Human Rights Act, Maine employers with 15 or more employees are required to provide sexual harassment training as follows:

  • All new employees – within one year of the hire date and
  • All new or newly promoted supervisory employees — within 1 year of being hired or promoted into a supervisory or managerial position (this is additional training).

This training requirement has been in place for a number of years; however, in response to the #metoo movement, the Maine Human Rights Act was recently amended to add a new requirement for the Maine sexual harassment training.  Maine employers must now use a checklist prepared by the Maine Department of Labor (MDOL) to develop their sexual harassment training programs.

This checklist reminds employers that the new employee sexual harassment education and training program must be given within one year of commencement of employment and must include the following elements: Continue reading NEW LAW: Maine’s New Sexual Harassment Training Requirements

NEW LAW: Sexual Harassment Training Now Required For Delaware Employees

On August 29, 2018, Delaware Governor John Carney signed House Bill 360 into law.  This new law, which goes into effect on January 1, 2019, amends the Delaware Discrimination in Employment Act by prohibiting sexual harassment in the workplace and imposing new requirements regarding sexual harassment training on most Delaware employers.

The new law makes it clear that both sexual harassment and retaliation are prohibited in employment in Delaware.  Sexual harassment is defined as “conduct that includes unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature.”  Such conduct is unlawful where:

  • submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of an employee’s employment;
  • submission to or rejection of such conduct is used as the basis for employment decisions affecting an employee; or
  • such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an employee’s work performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working environment.

Continue reading NEW LAW: Sexual Harassment Training Now Required For Delaware Employees

NEW GUIDANCE: New York State Publishes DRAFT Model Sexual Harassment Policy and Training

As reported in a previous article (New York State and New York City Amend Sexual Harassment Laws), earlier this year, New York State passed a stringent new sexual harassment law.

As a part of this law, the New York State Division of Human Rights and Department of Labor were required to publish a model anti-harassment training program and a model sexual harassment policy.  Once available, employers can choose whether to adopt the models prepared by the state or develop their own, so long as their policies and training meet or exceed the standards contained in the models.

On August 23, 2018, New York State released the following new materials designed to help New York employers comply with the new law:

Continue reading NEW GUIDANCE: New York State Publishes DRAFT Model Sexual Harassment Policy and Training

Failure to provide reasonable accommodation to deaf employee costs Costco $775,000

A Florida jury recently awarded a former Costco employee $775,000 for her claim that the company failed to reasonably accommodate her disability.

The former employee is deaf and she claimed that Costco failed to provide sufficient interpreting services for her at work — specifically during larger group meetings (held via conference call).  While Costco had provided this employee with a video phone, the employee had complained that the video phone did not work properly during larger meetings where there are multiple conversations occurring at the same time.  The employee asked Costco to provide a live interpreter for the large meetings and, while Costco agreed to provide the interpreter, one was never actually provided.

Continue reading Failure to provide reasonable accommodation to deaf employee costs Costco $775,000