The FEHA generally prohibits discrimination and harassment in the workplace. Among the FEHA’s existing provisions, employers with 50 or more employees must provide at least 2 hours of prescribed training and education regarding sexual harassment to all supervisory employees within 6 months of their assumption of a supervisory position and, subsequently, once every 2 years. The FEHA also requires employers to post certain information in the workplace, including information relating to sexual harassment.
SB 396 expands sexual harassment training and posting requirements. The required training for supervisory personnel must now include harassment based on gender identity, gender expression, and sexual orientation. In addition, employers must now display a poster that will be developed and published by the Department of Fair Employment and Housing (the agency tasked with enforcing the FEHA) regarding transgender rights in the workplace.
Key Takeaway: The new law takes effect January 1, 2018. Employers should ensure that harassment trainings taking place after that date include components specific to gender identity, gender expression, and sexual orientation. Employers should also keep an eye out for the amended harassment training poster to be developed and published by the DFEH, and replace any current posting with the amended one as soon as it becomes available.