With a continued nationwide effort to shed light on sexual harassment in the workplace, several states have implemented sexual harassment training requirements for their employees. In 2020, employers in Connecticut, Delaware, and Illinois will join Maine and New York in the group of states who require employers to provide sexual harassment prevention training to employees.
Here is a list of what the new requirements are for each state. Remember, you should always consult a lawyer if you have questions on upcoming or existing legislation.
Connecticut employers with 50 or more employees are currently required to provide two hours of sexual harassment training to all supervisory employees. However, as of October 1, 2019, employers with three or more employees must provide at least two hours of sexual harassment training to all employees.
This must be completed by October 1, 2020, or within six months of hiring thereafter. Employers could be subject to fines up to $1,000 if the required training is not provided.
Delaware employers with 50 or more employees must have all new employees trained within a year of their hire date and every two years after that in addition to having all current employees trained by January 1, 2020.
The state law, which went into effect on January 1, 2019, requires that all full-time, part-time, seasonal, and temporary employees participate in interactive training.
According to the law, requirements for the training include:
- The illegality of sexual harassment
- The definition of sexual harassment with examples
- The legal remedies and complaint process
- Instructions on how to contact the Delaware Department of Labor
- The legal prohibition against retaliation.
As of January 1, 2020, all Illinois employers—of any size, whether public or private—must provide sexual harassment training to employees as part of the Workplace Transparency Act. A free, online training program will be designed and provided by the Illinois Department of Human Rights, but employers can opt to buy courses created by a private company.
Employers will have until the end of 2020 to train all of their employees. Employees who are hired will have 90 days to complete the training.
Employers with five or more employees, including temporary or seasonal workers, will be required to provide at least two hours of sexual harassment training to all staff members with supervisor duties and at least one hour of training to to employees without supervisor duties by January 1, 2021. After that, the training must be given once every two years.
All new employees must be trained on sexual harassment within six months of their hire date.
The training must include:
- Practical guidance on the prevention and correction of sexual harassment, discrimination, and retaliation, and the remedies available to the victims of sexual harassment
- Training on not just sexual harassment, but harassment based on gender identity, gender expression, and sexual orientation
- Practical examples aimed at instructing supervisors in the prevention of harassment, discrimination, and retaliation that is presented by experts in the field.