Effective November 21, New Jersey will require employers with 50 or more employees to post and provide individual notice to employees of their right to be free from gender-based discrimination in pay, compensation, benefits, or terms and conditions of employment.

The new law requires employers to post in a conspicuous place in the work area the anti-gender discrimination notice that will be issued by the Commissioner of Labor and Workforce Development. In addition to the posting requirement, the law requires employers with 50 or more employees to provide workers with a copy of the notice at specific times, including (1) not later than 30 days after the notice is issued by the Commissioner, (2) at the time of a worker's hiring, (3) each year to all employees by December 31 and (4) at any time in response to a request from an employee.

Employers may distribute the notice by e-mail, in print (including employee handbooks), or through an Internet or intranet site if the site is for the exclusive use of the employees and can be accessed by all employees and the employer provides notice of its posting. The notice must also contain an acknowledgment form indicating the employee has read and understands the terms of the notice. The acknowledgment must be either signed or electronically verified by the employee within 30 days of receiving it.

The law requires employers to post the notice in English, Spanish, and any other language in which the notice is issued by the Commissioner and that the employer believes is the first language of a significant portion of the workforce.

Although the law goes into effect on November 21, no action is required by employers until the Commissioner issues the form of notice.

This legislation adds another administrative burden for New Jersey employers, who are already required to provide notices about record-keeping requirements under wage and benefit laws, family leave insurance, and whistleblowing. Employers should be sure they understand all of the obligations of this new law, including the annual distribution and employee acknowledgment requirements, and should remain alert for the notice that will be forthcoming from the Commissioner of Labor.