How to Prevent Sexual Harassment

sexual harassment training orange county california

You’ve probably heard the quote “prevention is cheaper than cure” and the same holds true for sexual harassment claims in the workplace.  If you’re looking ahead and wondering how to prevent sexual harassment, sexual harassment prevention training, is the way to go.

If you are a California employer with 50 or more employees, you are subject to a law commonly known as AB1825.  This law mandates sexual harassment training for supervisory employees every two years.   The law was enacted in 2005, which makes 2015 a re-training year.  Even if you are a smaller employer, a modified training program will go a long way to preventing sexual harassment in the workplace.

Basic Provisions of California’s AB1825

Two Hours of Sexual Harassment Training Every Two Years

The deadline for the first round of AB 1825 training was December 31, 2005. Thereafter, employers must provide two hours of training to each supervisory employee every two years.

50 or More Employees

AB1825’s sexual harassment training requirements apply to organizations that regularly employ 50 or more employees. (Independent contractors and temps are included in the 50+ number.)

New Hires and Promotions

New supervisory employees must receive sexual harassment training within six months of assuming the supervisory position, and every two years thereafter.

High Quality Sexual Harassment Training Required

The training mandated by AB 1825 must be of a high quality, conducted via “classroom or other effective interactive training.”

Failure to Comply Opens the Door to Sexual Harassment Lawsuits

Employees still have free will and are free to ignore any training they receive.  Nevertheless, providing training on how to identify sexual harassment, reporting procedures, and that there is no retaliation for reporting or participating with an investigation keeps the issue at the forefront of their minds and reduces the likelihood of conduct that would rise to the level of a hostile work environment.

A claim that an employer failed to provide AB 1825-mandated sexual harassment training does not automatically result in the liability of an employer for harassment. However, California employers have a duty under the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) to take all reasonable steps to prevent sexual harassment.  Litigious employees would argue that failure to meet the AB1825 training mandates is evidence of an employer’s failure to take all reasonable steps to prevent sexual harassment.

If you have any questions about California’s sexual harassment law or would like me to provide interactive, engaging, and AB1825 compliant sexual harassment prevention training for your business, you could contact me here.

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In: Employment Law

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