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March 14th, 2019
Mandatory Sexual Harassment Training Begins for Certain New York City Employers
April 1, 2019 is an important date for many New York City employers.
On that date New York City employers with 15 or more employees (including contractors) who have worked more than 80 hours and at least 90 days in a calendar year, must begin providing mandatory sexual harassment training. The law requires covered New York City employers to provide annual, interactive sexual harassment training to employees - either utilizing a model program to be prepared by the New York City Human Rights Commission, or one that equals or exceeds the minimum standards provided by the model training program. Training must be provided on an annual basis and to new employees within 90 days of initial hire.
New York State employers of all sizes became obligated to provide mandatory annual sexual harassment training effective October 9, 2018, with training to be completed by October 9, 2019. While employers may provide one training that is compliant with both New York State and New York City laws, the New York City laws contain some additional training components that are not required by New York State law.
New York State-compliant trainings must meet the following minimum requirements:
- be interactive (meaning via a live trainer or a web-based program with an interactive component where employees can ask and be asked questions)
- include an explanation of sexual harassment consistent with guidance issued by the New York State Department of Labor in consultation with the New York State Division of Human Rights
- include examples of conduct that would constitute unlawful sexual harassment
- include information concerning the federal and state statutory provisions concerning sexual harassment and remedies available to victims of sexual harassment
- include information concerning employees' rights of redress and all available forums for adjudicating complaints
- include information addressing conduct by supervisors and any additional responsibilities for supervisors
In addition to the foregoing, New York City-compliant trainings must include the following:
- An explanation of sexual harassment as a form of unlawful discrimination under federal, state and local law
- The complaint process available through the New York City Human Rights Commission
- The prohibition of retaliation and examples and
- Information concerning bystander intervention including but not limited to any resources that explain how to engage in bystander intervention.
Reminder: as of September 6, 2018, covered New York City employers must post the new anti-sexual harassment rights and responsibilities poster created by the New York City Commission on Human Rights. Employers must also distribute the information sheet to new employees at the time of hire or include similar information in their employee handbook. New York State employers should review their existing policies and procedures to ensure that they are in compliance with minimum state and city requirements for sexual harassment policies.
In case you missed them, our prior alerts on recent changes to the New York State and New York City anti-sexual harassment laws are here.
We will continue to monitor the impact of the new laws for employers and provide additional information as it becomes available.
If you would like to schedule a training session, update your policies, or discuss any other aspects of the new rules, please contact Wendy Stryker at (212) 705-4838 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or any other member of the Frankfurt Kurnit Executive Compensation & Employment Group.
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