CALIFORNIA AB2053 SEXUAL HARASSMENT TRAINING

In addition to previous sexual harassment training requirements, the new regulation requires:

  1. Employers are required to cover AB2053 “abusive conduct” and Bullying Prevention Awareness Training. This includes an overview of the remedies available for victims for any employer / individual exposure and liability and in civil actions.
  2. Employers must instruct supervisors to report any complaints of misconduct to a designated company representative.
  3. New recordkeeping obligations sexual harassment training of employees: An employer must now keep documentation of the training it provides its employees for a minimum of two years and track additional information.

Anti-Harassment And Anti-Discrimination Regulations Detailed
As of April 1st, 2016, new regulations require employers to have a written anti-harassment, anti-discrimination, and anti-retaliation policy to meet a number of new requirements. These policies must do the following:

  • List all of California’s current protected classes under the FEHA: race, religious creed, color, national origin, ancestry, physical disability, mental disability, medical condition, genetic information, marital status, sex (which includes pregnancy), gender, gender identity, gender expression, age, sexual orientation.
  • Indicate that the FEHA prohibits coworkers and third parties, as well as supervisors and managers, with whom the employee comes into contact from engaging in conduct prohibited by the FEHA.
  • Create a complaint process to ensure that complaints receive all of the following:
    An employer’s designation of confidentiality, to the extent possible.
  • A timely response.
  • Impartial and timely investigations by qualified personnel.
  • Documentation and tracking for reasonable progress.
  • Appropriate options for remedial actions and resolutions.
  • Timely closures.
  • Provide a complaint process that does not require the employee to complain directly to his or her immediate supervisor. Examples include a complaint hotline, access to an ombudsperson; and direct communication, either orally or in writing, with a designated company representative.
  • Instruct supervisors to report any complaints of misconduct to a designated company representative.
  • Indicate that when an employer receives allegations of misconduct, it will conduct a fair, timely, and thorough investigation that provides all parties appropriate due process and reaches reasonable conclusions based on the evidence collected.
  • State that confidentiality will be kept by the employer to the extent possible, but not indicate that the investigation will be completely confidential.
  • Indicate that if at the end of the investigation misconduct is found, appropriate remedial measures shall be taken.
  • Make clear that employees shall not be exposed to retaliation as a result of their complaint or participating in any workplace investigation.

New Regulations Regarding the Distribution Of Policies

  • Print and provide a copy to all employees with an acknowledgment form that is signed and collected from the employee.
  • Policy to be sent via e-mail with an acknowledgment return form.
  • Current versions of the policies to be posted on the company intranet with a tracking system to ensure all employees have read and acknowledged receipt of the policies.
  • Discussing policies upon hiring and/or during a new hire orientation session; and/or to offer any other mediums that ensure employees receive and understand the policies.

Foreign Language Translation
Employers whose workforce at any facility or establishment is comprised of at least 10% of individuals who speak a language other than English must translate the policy into each of those languages.

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