On May 9, 2018, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio signed into law new legislation to protect victims of sexual harassment. This change closely follows the changes to New York State law that went into effect just last month. You can read about the new State sexual harassment laws here.
The New York City legislation provides extensive and detailed protections for victims including an expanded statute of limitations for certain claims and posting requirements for NYC employers. Similar to the new State law, NYC employers will be required to adopt an anti-sexual harassment policy and conduct a training for employees each year.
Together, the new legislation respectively tasks the State and City with developing trainings that meet the minimum requirements for employers. At this time neither training has been published.
As we await more details about the trainings, employers need not feel totally in the dark about what’ll be expected. At the State level, we know training must include these minimum requirements:
- An explanation of sexual harassment that’s consistent with State DHR guidance;
- Examples of behaviors that are unlawful sexual harassment;
- Information about State and federal laws prohibiting sexual harassment and remedies available to victims;
- Information concerning employees’ rights and the forums available to adjudicate complaints; and
- Information about the responsibilities of supervisors and managers.
NYC’s requirements are more comprehensive and could indicate additional materials to be covered in the State-mandated training. For example, NYC’s legislation requires:
- A 90-day training window unless the employee’s been trained by a previous employer;
- The training must include information about bystander intervention;
- The training must describe and provide examples of retaliation;
- The training must describe the internal complaint process available to employees;
- The training must be interactive with use of audiovisuals and may conducted online or in person; and
- Employers must keep signed acknowledgement forms for all who complete the training.
The attorneys at The Coppola Firm are closely monitoring developments around the new sexual harassment laws and ordinances across the State. We’ll be promptly posting updates as they become available. Call us anytime for more information.