10/18/18

Labor and Employment Alert: California Extends Mandatory Sexual Harassment Training to All Employees

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California law currently requires employers with 50 or more employees to provide at least two hours of prescribed training and education regarding sexual harassment, abusive conduct, and harassment based upon gender to all supervisory employees within six months of assuming a supervisory position and once every two years thereafter. California enacted – Senate Bill 1343 – expands this requirement to include employers who employ five or more employees, including temporary or seasonal employees. Further, these employers must provide at least one hour of sexual harassment training to all nonsupervisory employees.

By January 1, 2020, employers must provide at least two hours of classroom or other effective interactive training and education regarding sexual harassment to all supervisory employees and at least one hour of classroom or other effective interactive training and education regarding sexual harassment to all nonsupervisory employees in California within six months of their assumption of a position. Beginning January 1, 2020, for seasonal and temporary employees, or any employee that is hired to work for less than six months, an employer must provide training within 30 calendar days after the hire date or within 100 hours worked, whichever occurs first. Temporary employment agencies must provide the training for their employees.

An employer may provide this training in conjunction with other training provided to the employees. The training may be completed by employees individually or as part of a group presentation, and may be completed in shorter segments, as long as the applicable hourly total requirement is met. An employer who has provided this training and education to an employee after January 1, 2019, is not required to provide training and education by the January 1, 2020, deadline. After January 1, 2020, each employer covered by this section shall provide sexual harassment training and education to each employee in California once every two years. An employer may develop its own training module or may direct employees to view the online training course the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing will develop and make available on its web site.

Employers should review their policies and procedures and ensure that it provides the required training. Contact your Vorys lawyer if you have questions about workplace training.

At the end of the 2018 legislative session, California enacted several laws that significantly impact employers. This Labor and Employment Alert is the second of a three-part series that discusses these new laws and their effect on employers. The first alert highlighted a new law which enacts further restrictions on non-disclosure agreements.