California’s New Sexual Harassment and Abusive Conduct Training Requirement

By Douglas L. Stuart, Aerlex Litigation Attorney

Under prior California law, organizations with 50 or more employees or independent contractors had to provide two hours of interactive harassment and abusive conduct prevention training for their managers and supervisors every two years and within six months of placement into a supervisory or management position. However, a new law in 2019, SB 1343, extended this same requirement to any employer with at least five employees or independent contractors and now includes non-supervisors.

No later than January 1, 2020, all supervisory employees must receive at least two hours of sexual harassment prevention training and education and all non-supervisory employees must receive at least one hour of training.

Whether supervisory or non-supervisory, all employee training must be completed within six months of assuming their position and must be provided once every two years.  Training may be conducted with other employees, as a group, or individually, and the hour requirements can be broken into shorter segments, as long as the required one or two hours is completed in full prior to the deadline.

An employer may develop its own training module or may direct employees to view the online training course developed by the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (“CDFEH”).  The CDFEH is required to make online training courses available on the prevention of sexual harassment and abusive conduct in the workplace and expects to have such training available by late 2019. There are also several third-party companies that can provide the on-line training for a fee and the training is available now.

If you have any questions about these new requirements or any other labor or litigation issues, please contact Douglas Stuart at 310-392-5200 or dstuart@aerlex.com.