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New California Regulations on Workplace Anti-Harassment, Anti-Discrimination Policies Effective April 1

New California regulations declaring that “[e]mployers have an affirmative duty to create a workplace environment that is free from employment practices prohibited by” the California Fair Employment and Housing Act and that “[e]mployers have an affirmative duty to take reasonable steps to prevent and promptly correct discriminatory and harassing conduct” will go into effect on April 1, 2016.

Among other requirements, the new regulations (2 CCR § 11023) provide that employers must have a written policy against unlawful harassment, discrimination, and retaliation in the workplace. In addition, the written policy must clearly state that unlawful harassment, discrimination, and retaliation by supervisors, managers and coworkers, as well as by third-parties (e.g., vendors and customers), is prohibited.

Further, employers are required to establish a confidential complaint process and ensure investigations are conducted by qualified personnel in an impartial and timely manner.

Employers must provide employees with a copy of the written policy. If an employer’s workforce at any facility or establishment contains at least 10 percent of persons who speak a language other than English as their spoken language, then the policy must be translated into every language that is spoken by at least 10 percent of the workforce. Employees may be asked to acknowledge receipt of the policy.

Employers should consult with employment counsel to determine whether and how their particular policies are affected by the new regulation and ensure they are in compliance.

Jackson Lewis P.C. © 2020National Law Review, Volume VI, Number 70

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About this Author

Jamerson C. Allen, Jackson Lewis, workplace harassment lawyer, defamation attorney
Principal

Jamerson C. Allen is a Principal in the San Francisco, California, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. He joined Jackson Lewis in 1989.

Mr. Allen represents employers in a wide variety of matters, including defending against claims for wrongful termination, wage hour violations, workplace harassment, defamation and discrimination on the basis of disability, pregnancy, sex, race, age, and national origin. Mr. Allen has also represented a number of employers in public accommodation cases brought under the Americans with Disabilities...

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