Sexual harassment in the workplace is against the law in California and most places around the country. Do you know exactly what sexual harassment entails? You could be guilty of it and not even realize it.
Sexual harassment is not always an overt act and is not always seen by everyone. Some people can be guilty of it and not know it because it is a part of their normal behavior. You should know the things that are considered sexual harassment in the workplace.
If this has happened to you in the workplace it is time for you to call an attorney. You will need to call sexual harassment lawyers to get help. They can help you with what needs to be done.
This article will let you know more about this subject and what you can do if it happens to you. It will give you some examples of it so that you know what to look for. If you need more information, you can do some research.
Sexual Harassment Law in California
- Motive Can Include Perceived Sex or Gender – In California, sexual harassment in the workplace is not always motivated by sexual desire. It can be based on gender, sexual orientation, pregnancy, and medical conditions that are relevant. If it is based on gender or sex, it can be considered sexual harassment in California.
Many times, people will be harassed based on their gender identity because others do not agree with it. This is a crime, and the harasser can be convicted of a crime in California. You can also be harassed based on your sexual preferences.
- If the Employee Fails to Report the Conduct in Any Way it Will Affect Their Ability to Seek Remedies Against the Employer – Many times, employees do not realize that they need to report this type of conduct. This will protect the employees themselves, as well as others who may be suffering from the same person. If you are an employer, you need to make sure that your employees know that they can and should report this.
Employees need to be aware of the channels that they should go through to report the conduct. If they do not report it, they might not be able to hold the person or the company liable for it. This could affect the mental health of the employee and others that are around the abuser.
- Sexual Harassment is Illegal in the Workplace According to the California Fair Employment and Housing Act, or FEHA – You can get a brochure from FEHA so that you know exactly what sexual harassment consists of. This way you can report it if it happens to you. You will be protecting yourself and others who may have been affected.
These brochures are necessary for you to do your sexual harassment compliance coaching. This needs to be done in every business that has more than five employees. The employees need to pass these brochures out at the training.
- Relevant Literature About Sexual Harassment Must Be Distributed – The brochure mentioned above along with other relevant literature needs to be distributed to every employee. If there are employees that are not present at your training, you must provide them with coaching at a later date. The literature must be given to them at the soonest possible time.
The employers can choose to pass out the “Facts About Sexual Harassment” brochure by FEHA:https://www.csuci.edu/hr/documents/new-hire-sexual-harrassment-notice.pdf. They can also use other literature that the employer can pass out. They can also create their own brochure that contains all the relevant information.
- According to FEHA Any Employer with More Than Five Employees Must Provide Instruction–Employers must provide a two-hour coaching to all their employees if there are more than five employees. This coaching must include the brochure from FEHA or one that has the same information. If you have an employee that misses the training, you must provide it for them at a later date.
This training is important for everyone because they need to know all the things that are done that can be considered sexual harassment. Things such as unwanted touches or groping or asking about someone’s sexual identity can be considered sexual harassment. There are other things that you might not have thought of.
- The Poster Related to Sexual Harassment Must Be Posted by California Businesses–There are at least two different posters that must be displayed in a prominent place in the workplace. See here to learn more. One is called “California Law Prohibits Discrimination and Harassment.” The other is called “Transgender Rights in the Workplace.”
If these posters are not prominently displayed, there could be sanctions against the business. These need to be displayed as a reminder of the law that could be broken. They are also a reminder of how people should act.
- A Policy Must Be Created About Harassment, Discrimination, and Retaliation–This policy needs to include the FEHA brochure information as well as other information. It needs to include information about the laws that concern these items. The policy should be spoken about at the required training.
This policy needs to be in writing and have a list of all the protected categories. It should also describe the complaint process. This process should be easy for everyone to do.
- 2-Hour Mandatory Sexual Harassment Training Must Be Provided to Supervising Staff for All Employers with More Than 50 Employees–This training is mandatory for every supervisor and must be done every two years. If there are supervisors who miss the training, it must be provided to them as soon as possible. It also must include all the materials that are available from FEHA.
If there are new supervisors that are hired, they must be given within six months. No supervisor can go longer than two years without having the training. All supervisors can be trained on the same day to make it easier for the employer.
- There Are Multiple Forms of Instruction That Are Allowed – This training can be offered in many ways. This can include training in the classroom, through a webinar, interactive training, and e-Learning are all appropriate ways to get the training done. As long as you can get the training done, it is probably acceptable.
There are many options that allow this training to be done. This allows all different types of learning styles to be accommodated. This way everyone can be given the training in the way that they learn best.
- There is a Specific Criteria for Qualified Instructors in California–Many people can be trainers, including attorneys, HR personnel, professional instructors, and harassment prevention consultants. These are all people that have experience with this type of training. They also have experience with teaching others what they know.
To do these training courses these people must have credentials that are directly relevant. If you use an attorney, they must be able to practice in any jurisdiction and must have practiced employment law. Instructors must have postgraduate degrees.
The state of California mandates sexual harassment training for any business that has more than five employees. These businesses must do this training at least once a year so that all their employees get it. If they have more than fifty employees, all supervisors must complete the coaching within six months of being hired.