New York State Issues Final Guidance Concerning Sexual Harassment in the Workplace

October 4, 2018 | Client Alerts
As we wrote here in July 2018, New York State enacted a sweeping set of laws aimed at curbing sexual harassment in the workplace.  Two of the most prominent pieces of the legislation required employers to adopt a compliant sexual harassment policy and provide annual sexual harassment training to all employees.  In August of this year, New York State provided draft guidance for employers regarding the new policy and training requirements.  After considering comments from employers regarding its draft materials, the New York State Department of Labor and the New York State Division of Human Rights published final guidance on the new policy and harassment training requirements on October 1st.
 
Importantly, the deadline for New York State's new sexual harassment training requirement has been moved to October 9, 2019.  However, the deadline for New York employers to adopt a compliant sexual harassment policy is still October 9, 2018.  While employers can adopt the state's new model policy, there are also minimum standards issued by New York (click here) that employers can use to craft their own sexual harassment policy.  New employees should sign a form acknowledging receipt of the policy and return it on the first day of employment. Current employees should sign a similar form and the employer should require the form to be returned within a certain number of days after receipt of the new sexual harassment policy (click here for a sample of the model policy with an acknowledgement form).  The signed acknowledgment forms should be retained by the employer for a 3-year period.  

New York has also made many other important changes to its Frequently Asked Questions document, which can be found here: https://www.ny.gov/combating-sexual-harassment-workplace/combating-sexual-harassment-frequently-asked-questions
 
Please contact any of our Team members with any questions.
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