California Employment Law Update — March 2019

California

Senate Bill Introduced to Clarify Sexual Harassment Training Requirements

On February 26, 2019, the California Senate introduced legislation (S.B. 778) regarding the sexual harassment training requirements under the California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA). The bill was introduced due to confusion about training and retraining in context of the compliance dates.

Under existing law and by January 1, 2020, employers with five or more employees must provide at least two hours of classroom or other effective interactive training and education regarding sexual harassment to all supervisory employees, and at least one hour of the same to all nonsupervisory employees in California within six months of their assumption of a position. Existing law also specifies that an employer that has provided this training to an employee after January 1, 2019, is not required to provide sexual harassment training and education by the January 1, 2020, deadline.

Senate Bill 778 specifies that an employer who has provided this training and education to an employee after January 1, 2018, is not required to do so again until after December 31, 2020. The bill would also require a “refresher training” to each employee once every two years and make other related changes to those provisions requiring sexual harassment training.

Importantly, this bill has only been introduced and may be acted upon on or after March 29, 2019, as stated in the “history actions” (a chronological list of actions taken on the bill).

When viewing the bill on the legislature’s website (which is updated as the bill progresses):

  • Select the “status” tab to review the bill status, type of measure, and the last five history actions.
  • Select the “compare versions” tab to review the specific changes to the law introduced by S.B. 778.

Read CA S.B. 778