In response to the #MeToo movement, New York City is now requiring employers to post a notice of employees’ rights and avenues of remedies if they have been subjected to sexual harassment. Employers must “conspicuously” display the poster “in employee breakrooms or other common areas employees gather.” The poster must be put on display before September 6, 2018.
In addition, employers must provide all new employees with an informational fact sheet at the time of hire. The sheet can be incorporated into an employee handbook or distributed separately. Again, the deadline is September 6, 2018.
It is also important to be aware of the other recent law passed in New York City, requiring employers with 15 or more employees are required to provide annual anti-sexual harassment training for all employees. This begins on April 1, 2019. Additional information can be found here.
New York State has passed many similar laws, including requiring all employers operating within the state (even if they only have one employee) to provide annual anti-sexual harassment training. This will be implemented on October 9, 2018, so it is a good idea to begin planning for it now. The model sexual harassment prevention training must be interactive and include the following:
- an explanation of sexual harassment;
- examples of conduct that would constitute unlawful sexual harassment;
- information concerning the federal and state statutory provisions concerning sexual harassment and remedies available to victims; and
- information concerning employees’ rights of redress and all available forums for adjudicating complaints.
The model training must also include information addressing conduct by supervisors and additional responsibilities for supervisory personnel.
New York State employers must also adopt a sexual harassment prevention policy to be distributed in writing to employees. The model sexual harassment prevention policy must include the following:
- a statement prohibiting sexual harassment;
- examples of prohibited conduct that would constitute sexual harassment;
- information concerning the federal and state statutory provisions concerning sexual harassment and remedies available to victims, along with a statement that there may be additional applicable local laws;
- a standard complaint form;
- the procedure for the timely and confidential investigation of complaints;
- a statement informing employees of their rights of redress and all available forums for adjudicating sexual harassment complaints administratively and judicially;
- a statement that sexual harassment is a form of employee misconduct, and that sanctions will be enforced against individuals engaging in sexual harassment and managers and supervisory personnel who knowingly allow such behavior to continue; and
- a statement that retaliation against individuals reporting sexual harassment or who testify or assist in any proceeding is unlawful.
If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us at 505-797-1354 or email us.
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