Upcoming notice requirement on protections for victims of sexual assault, domestic violence and stalking
Jasmin B. Bhandari
Under the California Labor Code, if you employ 25 or more employees, you must provide time off and other accommodations to employees who are victims of sexual assault, domestic abuse and stalking.
What are the new notice requirements?
Now, qualifying employers will be will be required to provide written notice to new employees, and to current employees upon request, of their time off and accommodation rights under this law. The Labor Commissioner will develop a model notice no later than July 1, 2017 and post it on its website. You don’t have to comply with the notice requirement until the Labor Commissioner’s model notice is available. But you should still be compliant with the underlying obligations to provide time off and other accommodations for victims of sexual assault, domestic abuse and stalking. One way to prove your compliance is to provide your own notice until the Labor Commissioner’s notice is available.
What are your underlying obligations under this law?
You must allow employees who are victims of sexual assault, domestic abuse and stalking to take time off to appear in court, to obtain restraining orders, to obtain medical or psychological treatment, or for safety and shelter services. You may also have to make other workplace safety-related accommodations. Such accommodations may include physical security such as installation of locks, reassignment or changes in work schedule, as well as changing telephone numbers, providing assistance in documenting domestic violence, sexual assault or stalking that occurs in the workplace, or other adjustments to job duties. In addition, employers are prohibited from discriminating against such employees
You should watch for updates on the new model notice that is coming out this year and to review their policy for compliance, with the assistance of legal counsel.