California Sexual Harassment Training Deadline: What You Need to Know

California Sexual Harassment Training Deadline: What You Need to Know

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Jan 1, 2021 was the deadline for California sexual harassment training for employers with 5+ employees and must be conducted every 2 years. Non supervisory employees require 1 hour of sexual harassment training and supervisory employees require 2 hours.

When is the Sexual Harassment California Training Deadline?

Assembly Bill 1825, which mandated sexual harassment training, was initially proposed in 2004. (AB 1825). This regulation mandated that some companies offer supervisory staff with sexual harassment training and instruction. This was designed to protect employees against workplace harassment, discrimination, and retribution.

Sexual harassment is defined as unwelcome sexual approaches or sexual verbal, physical, or visual harassment by the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH). The Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) monitors California employers to ensure that they comply with the state's anti-harassment training rules by the deadline.

What are the requirements for the Mandatory Sexual Harassment Prevention Training?

Employers are obligated to conduct a complete training programme to educate their staff as part of the California sexual harassment training requirements. The following issues must be addressed throughout the training:

  • In California, there is a legal definition of sexual harassment and what constitutes harassment.
  • Include incidents of sexual harassment based on gender identity, gender expression, or sexual orientation.
  • The employee has access to the company's internal grievance system.
  • The agency provides legal assistance as well as a complaint mechanism.
  • Information about how to contact the department.
  • Victims who file a complaint are protected from reprisal.
  • A link to the DFEH's complaint about sexual harassment online training classes.

The training's purpose is to avoid workplace harassment, discrimination, and retribution. It is the responsibility of the employer to safeguard his or her employees.

This training can be done individually or as part of a group presentation, and it can be done in parts as long as the total programme duration is two hours for supervisors and one hour for non-supervisory staff.

If the training and education programme is completed by employees individually, the training can be conducted online through a comprehensive course (such as EasyLlama's) as long as the preceding condition is satisfied.

It is crucial to emphasise that meeting the training standards does not shield an employer against allegations of sexual harassment. If an employer, on the other hand, fails to comply with the criteria, he or she is not automatically liable for a lawsuit.

What Are the Consequences of Noncompliance?

The DFEH may penalise you if you do not meet the standards by the deadline. The DFEH can conduct an audit of a company's operations to ensure that all personnel are in compliance. If the DFEH detects a violation, the employer may be subject to a significant noncompliance penalty.

If the DFEH determines that employees have not been adequately taught for legal compliance by the deadline, the employer will be ordered to comply and teach the employees through a state mandate. If the employer continues to break the law, the DFEH will charge the company owner with significant non-compliance fines.

Even worse than paying costs, if a company owner fails to follow the training laws and a harassment case emerges, the employer may face severe consequences for failing to take preventative actions. This can have a significant negative impact on the company's reputation, which is more difficult to repair than financial losses.

How Should Sexual Harassment Prevention Training Be Delivered?

While the necessity to train is unchangeable, you do have alternatives for how you train staff in your dentistry, optometry, or veterinary office. The training can take place in a regular classroom environment, online, or even via a webinar. The California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) provides free legal training classes on its website.

You have the option of scheduling group or individual training for your personnel. The training can be performed in its whole or in smaller chunks. You may, for instance, divide your training into 30-minute chunks.

During paid work hours, all training must be delivered. This training cannot be done on an employee's personal time, including break time. Employers are also responsible for any costs incurred as a result of the training.

Some suggestions for Sexual Harassment Prevention Training are as follows:

  • Keep the training interactive and scenario-based

By bringing the reality of unpleasant harassment scenarios forward in a secure context, you may tap into the emotional mindshare of the issue. 

Emotional connections may be formed through bite-sized episodes that immerse employees in realistic scenarios, which can have a favourable impact on behaviour. Immersive scenarios, rather than a static list of dos and don'ts, may dramatise many sorts of unpleasant behaviour, particularly subtler versions, and highlight how rapidly it can grow into unlawful harassment.

  • Expand the range of subjects covered

Although detecting sexual harassment is the focus of most training courses, numerous other subjects have an impact on employee attitudes and can help get to the base of the problem. Other workplace factors to consider include unconscious prejudice, LGBTQ+ discrimination, and gender identity. By widening workers' perspectives on diversity, equity, and inclusion, the whole cultural dynamic is strengthened.

  • Imagine customising your learning experience

A 30-minute basic learning session offered at onboarding will not have a lasting impact. Maintain it throughout time by attending frequent refresher learning courses, engaging in informal learning through blogs and publications, and participating in discussion groups.

Customise the learning process by providing more than just a single training session to employees, and personalise the experience to fill any skill gaps.

  • Make a list of your objectives

The final objective is to work in an environment that is free of harassment. However, because events are frequently underreported, and training should explain how to spot and report them, lowering the number of incidents reported should not be a goal, at least not at the start.

Develop a series of anonymous employee feedback questionnaires in which employees may submit updates on the work environment, including the prevalence of harassing conduct.

  • Analyse the outcomes

Where are your students having difficulty? Where do they have holes and where do you have exposure? Assess particular abilities and pinpoint problem areas that require more effort. Continuously monitor behaviour change by including data collection and analytics into the learning process.

Using these preventative tactics in your workplace will help you avoid sexual harassment while also cultivating a respectful and supportive atmosphere. Take efforts to guarantee that your sexual harassment prevention training(opens in new tab) doesn't fall flat, or worse, has the opposite impact.

Everyone, even business owners, has been affected by the COVID 19 epidemic. Employers may find it difficult to organise the appropriate training for staff in light of the present social distancing tactics. In the face of the epidemic, California has yet to say whether it would stick to its own extension strategy. California company owners are currently looking for secure online training to satisfy the standards.

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