Workforce Alert: Just over 60 Days Left to Comply with NY’s New Sexual Harassment and Discrimination Avoidance Training Law

August 01, 2019

The State of New York implemented new employee training regulations effective October 9, 2018, with compliant training for existing employees to be first completed by October 9, 2019.  The law requires sexual harassment and discrimination avoidance training for all employees who spend any time working in the State of New York, regardless of the size of the employer’s total or New York-based workforce. 

Training must be completed as soon as possible for new employees and on an annual basis for existing employees, must be interactive, and must include the following:

  • Explanation of sexual harassment consistent with guidance issued by the Department of Labor, with examples
  • Explanation of federal and state harassment and discrimination laws and remedies
  • Description of employees’ rights of redress and available forums for adjudicating complaints
  • Conduct by supervisors and any additional responsibilities for such supervisors

The City of New York also has training requirements that require the above topics, plus the following additional training topics, to be covered by employers with 15 or more employees (including independent contractors), effective April 1, 2019 (Local Law 96 of 2018):

  • Explanation of New York City Human Rights Laws
  • Addition of the NYC Commission on Human Rights to the forums for adjudicating complaints
  • Education regarding bystander intervention
  • Explanation of responsibility of supervisors and managers
  • Definition and examples of prohibited retaliation

The New York City law does not specify whether its requirements only apply to employers with 15 or more employees working in the City (as opposed to employers with 15 or more overall but fewer than 15 working in the City).  We recommend that any employer with 15 or more employees (working anywhere) provide this training to all employees who work in New York City.   Each employee of a covered employer who works more than 80 hours in a calendar year must receive this training within 90 days after he or she is hired.

If you need help with these trainings, please contact Amie Flowers Carmack.

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