New York state has recently passed sweeping legislation requiring all employers in New York to provide sexual harassment training. The law is effective October 9, 2018 but they have given New York State employers only a few months to train their entire workplaces. This training must be implemented by January 1, 2019. Taking into account the fact that the most people take vacations in late December, this deadline gives employers very little time. Keep in mind as well that this training is mandatory for all your employees and managers. So if 5 employees are not available on the date that you provide the training, and you do not find another day prior to January 1, 2019 to train them, you will not be in compliance. Therefore, employers should start getting their ducks in a row now to schedule sexual harassment training as soon as possible and make sure your entire workforce has this training prior to January 1, 2019.
This training must be interactive and provide your employees with an understanding and explanation of what sexual harassment is that is consistent with the Department of Labor's guidelines. It must include specific examples of types of conduct that would be considered unlawful sexual harassment and also include remedies available to victims of sexual harassment under federal and state law. The mandatory training for New York employers must also include forums where employees can have their sexual harassment complaints adjudicated and for the manager training must focus in on the heightened responsibilities managers/supervisors have for preventing harassment in the workplace. This training must be provided annually by New York state employers. However, that is not all. Once you have provided this sexual harassment training, any employees hired after the date of the training must be given sexual harassment training within 30 days of the employee/manager's date of hire. This requirement will be extremely difficult for employers to comply with because it means that they must provide interactive training to every new hire within 30 days of their date of hire. Not an easy feat.
You may be wondering what does the requirement that the training be "interactive" mean? It requires that the training include some form of participation by the participant. It requires some form of employee participation, meaning the training may:
- Be web-based with questions asked of employees as part of the program
- Allow for questions by participants
- Be presented by a live trainer who is available during the session to answer questions; and/or
- Require feedback from employees about the training and the materials presented
This sexual harassment training requirement for New York employers is going to require a quick response by employers to ensure that they have complied with this new law by providing interactive training to their entire workforce by the deadline of January 1, 2019 and for each new hire within 30 days of their date of hire. HR Learning Center LLC has developed sexual harassment training that is fully compliant with the New York requirements and we stand ready to help you ensure compliance immediately. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 914-417-1715 to schedule a New York compliant sexual harassment training seminar/webinar today.