Why it matters

California employers, take note: The Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) has launched a statewide survey on antiharassment and diversity policies. Conducted through phone interviews with randomly selected California employers, the survey “seeks to develop a portrait of how California employers manage diversity and harassment issues,” the DFEH explained. Questions will cover sexual harassment policies, recruiting programs for women and minorities, and harassment complaint procedures, among other topics. “Knowing more about California employers’ harassment and diversity initiatives is key to the Department’s ongoing work to prevent workplace harassment and discrimination,” DFEH Director Kevin Kish said in a statement. “We expect the results of the survey to provide important insights for policy makers and the public alike.”

Detailed discussion

In May 2016, the Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) launched a Task Force on the Prevention of Sexual Harassment in the Workplace to study the issue of sexual harassment in California, the effects of ten years of harassment prevention training and the best practices to prevent harassment.

The new survey is an outgrowth of the Task Force’s efforts, the DFEH said.

California employers will be randomly selected to take part and will be contacted by phone. Questions will address employer policies on antidiscrimination, sexual harassment and general antiharassment policies, the agency said, as well as employer-sponsored trainings on harassment and diversity issues, recruiting programs for women and minorities, and harassment complaint procedures.

Only aggregate survey data will be released, and company names will not be recorded.

The Task Force previously issued a Workplace Harassment Guide for California Employers, offering DFEH-recommended practices for preventing and addressing all forms of workplace harassment, including harassment based on sex. With the possibility of a call from the DFEH in the near future, now might be a good time for employers to review the guide as well as their policies.

To read the DFEH press release, click here.