As we shared in our August newsletter, New York State and New York City have released new laws relating to sexual harassment training. Delaware has also recently released new laws on the same topic. Below, we review the specifics of those requirements, answer frequently asked questions we've received, and detail the ethics and compliance learning content developed by SAI Global to ensure you can meet those requirements.
New York State
The new State law mandates that employers have written sexual harassment prevention policies and provide sexual harassment prevention training to all New York employees. The training requirements take effect on October 9, 2018 and all employees must be trained by October 9, 2019. Every employee must also receive training on an annual basis thereafter (or more frequently).
On August 24, 2018, the State of New York issued proposed model policies and model training documents, inviting comments from the public on each through September 12, 2018. These documents will be finalized after the comment period. This process is under way. New employees should complete sexual harassment prevention training as quickly as possible, ideally within approximately 30 days. The exact time period has yet to be specified.
New York City
The city law, which applies to employers with 15 or more employees, mandates that those employers conduct annual anti-sexual harassment training for all full-time and part-time New York City employees who work more than 80 hours in a calendar year. The law takes effect on April 1, 2019 and all employees must be trained by September 1, 2019. Like the State law, the city law employees must also be trained on an annual basis thereafter.
Delaware's sexual harassment training requirements will apply to employers with 50 or more employees in Delaware (not including applicants and independent contractors) and will become effective January 1, 2019.
Under the new State law, Delaware employers must provide training: (1) for existing employees within one year of the effective date of the law (that is, by January 1, 2020); (2) for new supervisors within one year of the commencement of their employment in a supervisory role; and (3) for new employees within one year of their start date.
The employee and supervisor training programs must be repeated every two years. The supplemental supervisor training must cover the specific responsibilities of a supervisor in preventing and correcting sexual harassment, as well as the legal prohibition against retaliation. More information on Delaware's Discrimination in Employment Act can be found on JD Supra.
SAI GLOBAL LEARNING CONTENT UPDATE
The SAI Global content team has used these drafts to prepare addenda to existing courses covering those few issues that are not already addressed in our existing course materials, such as where a New York or Delaware employee would go to file a harassment complaint. These courses already meet the requirements of California AB 1825 and other states. This training is modern, mobile, translated, flexible, customizable, and created in collaboration with legal experts at Quarles & Brady LLP.
The additions to our existing courses with pages relevant to the New York laws will be released October 9, 2018. Once the laws are finalized (including any changes to the New York State law made as a result of the review of public comments), SAI Global will release light updates to reflect any changes, likely in early 2019.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Do we really need to train New York employees by January 1, 2019?
No. The New York State law was recently updated with a deadline to train all New York employees by October 9, 2019. Note that following the close of the public comment period, this deadline was moved from January 1, which was previously listed as the deadline.
What is 'interactive' training?
Both the New York State and City laws require “interactive” sexual harassment training. “Interactive” training requires some form of employee participation. An employer's sexual harassment training may be web-based, but should include questions asked of employees and an opportunity for employees to ask and have their questions answered.
Is there a length of time requirement for the New York training?
Neither the State nor the City have yet provided guidance on how long training must be.
How often must New York employees receive sexual harassment training?
Under the State law, all new employees must complete sexual harassment training within 30 calendar days of starting their job. In addition, all employees must be trained at least once per year. In subsequent years, this may be based on the calendar year, anniversary of each employee's start date or any other date the employer chooses.
What if a New York employee only works part-time?
Under the State law, employers are required to ensure that all employees receive training. Under the City law, employers are required to ensure that all employees who work more than 80 hours in a calendar year in New York City receive training.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) About SAI Global's E&C Learning Content on Sexual Harassment
Will my SAI Global sexual harassment content be compliant with New York and Delaware laws?
Yes. Our most popular and current sexual harassment courses will be updated to reflect the New York and Delaware laws by October 9, 2018.
Will modifications be made to the 'profiling' option at the beginning of the course which requires the employee to indicate which state they are in?
In addition to presenting general principles for all employees, the course uses SAI Global's Profiling functionality to provide content for managers and supervisors, as well as state-specific content for companies that are required to offer training under the laws of California, Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, New York, New York City and the Virgin Islands.
Will my course by updated?
The following courses are being updated:
1. Sexual Harassment: A Matter of Respect (Course Code: CSsh01aSAI) (Have DemoZone access? Try it here.)
2. Reporting Harassment: Everyone's Responsibility (Course Code: CSsh05aSAI) (Have DemoZone access? Try it here.)
3. Sexual Harassment: Leading a Respectful Workplace (Course Code: AAsh20aSAI) (Have DemoZone access? Try it here.)
4. Sexual Harassment: Maintaining a Respectful Workplace (Course Code: AASh19aSAI) (Have DemoZone access? Try it here.)
What if the course we are using is not on the list?
Clients that are using another sexual harassment course not included on this list can provide Delaware and New York-specific information with an annotation.
How do I get my course updated?
To update your existing sexual harassment course with an annotation on New York and Delaware specific information, please contact your dedicated SAI Global Client Success Manager.
The course updates released on October 9, 2018, will be in English, with translations to follow.
If you have any questions that haven't been answered in this post, or would like to receive a demonstration of our E&C learning content and training that are compliant with the Delaware, NY State and NYC regulations around sexual harassment, please contact us today.