Although federal and state laws have prohibited employment-related sexual harassment and sex discrimination for decades, the #MeToo movement inspired several states and local jurisdictions to pass laws targeting sexual harassment in the workplace more directly. The new laws address issues such as mandatory anti-harassment training, workplace policies, confidentiality in settlement agreements, and the arbitrability of
In the wake of the #MeToo movement, a number of states (and New York City) now mandate workplace sexual harassment prevention training.
The chart below is intended to help multi-state employers keep track of their obligations across the country.
This month California’s Department of Fair Employment and Housing released an updated Sexual Harassment Poster and Brochure.
Either the poster or the brochure can be distributed to employees to meet legal requirements.
For more on new obligations for California employers with respect to sexual harassment
As we previously reported, New York State’s new sexual harassment prevention policy and training requirements take effect today, October 9, 2018.
After issuing draft documents in August, the State released final guidance clarifying the new requirements just last week, giving employers little time to get their ducks in a row before the October 9 deadline.
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In the wake of the #metoo movement, several lawmakers proposed legislation to ban confidentiality provisions in workplace sexual harassment settlements.
Critics of confidentiality agreements say that they enable serial abusers and silence victims. But, some advocates question whether a ban could actually harm individuals. For instance, some victims may actually prefer confidentiality and the prospect of publicity may discourage them from coming forward. Further, the promise of confidentiality may lead to larger (and earlier) monetary settlements for victims.
The use of mandatory employment arbitration agreements has long been the subject of debate, but the controversy has intensified since the inception of the #MeToo movement. Some legislators believe that mandatory arbitration of sexual harassment claims silences harassment victims and perpetuates harassment.