Harassment Training is Required

5 women and men in office attire stand in an office, the 3 men stand in the foreground smiling and conversing and two women in the background of the photo have their own conversation while smiling

Why should you prioritize your team’s anti-harassment training?  California legislation (SB 1343) was passed in 2018 and requires employers with at least five employees to provide sexual harassment training every two years to all employees. The training must be at least 1-hour for non-supervisory employees and at least 2-hours for supervisory employees.

Employers must provide sexual harassment training under the new law by January 1, 2021

MMC has interactive E-learning options for our clients to be able to meet this requirement.

MMC E-learning training covers the following topics as required by the law:

  • definitions of abusive conduct, sexual harassment, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, and other protected characteristics
  • identification of behavior constituting unlawful harassment, discrimination, and/or retaliation under both California and federal law
  • how to deal with harassing behavior in the workplace including reporting harassment complaints
  • supervisors’ duty to report harassing, discriminatory, or retaliatory behavior they become aware of
  • the proper response to a harassment complaint
  • employer’s obligation to investigate a harassment complaint
  • what is retaliation and how to prevent it
  • essential aspects of an anti-harassment policy
  • the negative effects of harassment in the workplace
  • practical examples

If you choose not to use MMC training options, the Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) has developed an online training course on preventing sexual harassment and abusive conduct in the workplace.  However, unlike MMC training, the DFEH online course does not save an employee’s progress. MMC’s training allows for saving progress so that employees are not required to complete the training in one sitting. If an employee needs to exit the course for any reason, their place will be saved. The DFEH training provides the option to obtain a certificate of completion. The employee can save, print, or take a photo or screenshot of the certificate. Thus, the employer must rely on the employee to track their own course completion and provide the certificate to the employer internally.  MMC training allows employers to track completion electronically.

To summarize, this training is required. If an employer is not in compliance with this requirement, the DFEH will issue an order requiring the employer to comply with the minimum requirements under the law. In the grander scheme, failure to comply with the minimum training requirements can result in a larger settlement figure or even jury verdict, in the event there is a litigated sexual harassment claim.

Please contact your MMC HR team to review the status of your company’s training.  We can work with you to determine who needs to still complete the training and the best options to make sure you meet the January 1, 2021 deadline.