ECA News

ARTICLE

Date ArticleType
9/17/2018 Industry News
NYS Sexual Harassment Law Starts to Take Effect in October

To be compliant with New York State's updated sexual harassment laws, ALL Employers must have a sexual harassment policy in place for your company by October and training for all staff by January 1, 2019.
 
The policy must:

• prohibit sexual harassment consistent with guidance issued by the Department of Labor in consultation with the Division of Human Rights
• provide examples of prohibited conduct that would constitute unlawful sexual harassment
• include information concerning the federal and state statutory provisions concerning sexual harassment, remedies available to victims of sexual harassment, and a statement that there may be applicable local laws
• include a complaint form
• include a procedure for the timely and confidential investigation of complaints that ensures due process for all parties
• inform employees of their rights of redress and all available forums for adjudicating sexual harassment complaints administratively and judicially
• clearly state that sexual harassment is considered a form of employee misconduct and that sanctions will be enforced against individuals engaging in sexual harassment and against supervisory and managerial personnel who knowingly allow such behavior to continue
• clearly state that retaliation against individuals who complain of sexual harassment or who testify or assist in any investigation or proceeding involving sexual harassment is unlawful.

The training must:
• be interactive
• include an explanation of sexual harassment consistent with guidance issued by the Department of Labor in consultation with the 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 such supervisors
• Each employee must receive training on an annual basis.

For All State Contractors Beginning in January 2019, all state contractors must submit an affirmation that they have a sexual harassment policy and that they have trained all of their employees. The new law ensures that nondisclosure agreements can only be used when the condition of confidentiality is the explicit preference of the victim.
 
The state's website has additional information, including model policy language and model training programs: ny.gov/programs/combating-sexual-harassment-workplace
 
Please note that NYC has its own sexual harassment laws which include additional requirements. www1.nyc.gov/site/cchr/media/sexual-harassment-campaign.page