On September 21, 2012, Governor Christie signed into law new legislation (A-2647 / S-1930) that requires New Jersey employers with 50 or more employees to post and provide notices of workers’ rights “to be free of gender inequity or bias in pay, compensation, benefits or other terms or conditions of employment” under New Jersey’s Law Against Discrimination, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Equal Pay Act of 1963. 

The Commissioner of Labor and Workforce Development will promulgate the form of notice and will make translations available in Spanish and any other language the Commissioner determines is necessary.  The employer must post and provide notice in English, Spanish, and in any other language made available by the Commissioner that the employer “reasonably believes” is the first language of “a significant number of the employer’s workforce.”

Along with posting the notice in a conspicuous area, the employer must provide workers with a written copy of the notice at the following times: (1) no less than 30 days after the notice is promulgated by the Commissioner; (2) at the time of the worker’s hiring, if hired after the issuance of the notice; (3) annually, on or before December 31; and (4) at any time, upon the first request of the worker.  The written notice may take the form of: (1) email delivery; (2) printed material (i.e., brochure, pay check insert, attachment to employment manual, flyer distributed at an employee meeting); or (3) an internet or intranet website, provided that the site is for the exclusive use of the workers, can be accessed by all workers, and employers give notice to the workers of its posting. 

Workers must sign an acknowledgement, either written or through electronic verification, that they have read and understood the terms of the notice.  The acknowledgement must be returned to the employer within 30 days of receiving the notice.

This law is scheduled to take effect on November 21, 2012, but the Commissioner has not yet promulgated the form of notice.  Once the notice is promulgated, employers will have 30 days to comply with this law.  The full text of the bill is available at: http://www.njleg.state.nj.us/2012/Bills/AL12/57_.HTM

Impact: Only employers with 50 or more employees are affected by this bill.  Although the Commissioner will be responsible for promulgating and translating the notice, employers should be sure to post and provide this notice within 30 days of the Commissioner’s promulgation of the form of notice.  Employers must also receive acknowledgement from their workers within 30 days of receipt of the notice that they have read and understood the notice.  Finally, employers have a continuing obligation to provide this notice to all new hires, to all existing workers on an annual basis, and to any worker who makes a first request to see the notice.