Starting next week, all employers in New York City will be required to comply with the Stop Sexual Harassment in NYC Act. The act, which was signed by Mayor Bill de Blasio on May 9th, 2018, is “a comprehensive legislative package aimed at addressing and preventing sexual harassment in the workplace,” according to the City of New York. Sexual harassment and discrimination is illegal in NYC and it is important for employees to feel protected while working. Behaviors that would be classified as a form of sexual harassment include:
- Unwanted touching
- Offensive and suggestive gestures or comments
- Inquiring about a person’s sex life or making sexualized remarks about a person’s appearance.
- Sexualizing the workplace with imagery or other items.
- Telling sexual jokes.
Part of the soon-to-be-enacted law requires employers to post an anti-sexual harassment notice in their business establishment in both English and Spanish. The notices provide examples of what constitutes as a form of sexual harassment and ways victims can report it. NYC employers must have these notices posted by September 6thin order to comply with the new law. Aside from that, employers must also provide their workers, including those who they hire in the future, with a fact sheet.
Some other obligation’s employers will soon be required to fulfill include:
- Employers with 15 or more employees are required to conduct an annual anti-sexual harassment training for all of their employees. This requirement will take effect in April 2019 and employers will have one year to implement this training for all of their employees. The New York City Commission will be offering an online training on its website to employers who are looking for help to satisfy this requirement or they have the opportunity of developing their own annual anti-sexual harassment training.
- Employers will be required to keep a record of all the trainings held along with the signed employee acknowledgment forms.
If you are the victim of sexual misconduct in NYC and are in search of advice on how to handle the matter, one of our New York, NY sexual harassment lawyers would be more than happy to provide you with it.
Because the issue of sexual harassment is finally getting the attention it needs, there is hope that fewer incidents will occur. And according to Seth Hoy, who is a City Commission on Human Rights (CCHR) spokesman, he said that the CCHR hopes the new law will remind “employers that they have an obligation to prevent and address sexual harassment in the workplace and should train staff on reporting and intervention policies.” The new laws come after the number of sexual harassment claims has increased by 43% over the course of the past two years, according to AM New York.
Although employees are being more encouraged to come forward with their sexual harassment complaints, some still worry they will be retaliated against for doing so. Therefore, if you are the victim of sexual misconduct in NYC and aren’t ready to report the incident to your employer, you can place your trust in one of our New York, NY sexual harassment attorneys. They can help you understand what your rights are and the forms of action that can be taken. And you won’t have to worry about addressing the issue on your own as our lawyers are more than capable of helping you file a complaint.