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Sexual Harassment Training and Prevention -
What AB 1825 and GC 12950.1 mean to you...

Diane Dennis Enterprises © 2005

 

Assembly Bill 1825 and Government Code Section 12950.1 change the requirements of the employer in regards to sexual harassment training and prevention.

Please note that although this article references specifically California law, soon state after state will start instituting tougher sexual harassment requirements. Because of this, you'll probably find this article informative no matter what state you're in. :)

By January 1, 2006*, employers with 50 or more employees must provide ALL of their supervisory employees who are employed as of July 1, 2005, and all new supervisory employees within six months of their assuming the position, with at least two hours of sexual harassment prevention training.

In addition, this training must be repeated no less than once every two years, with each and every supervisory employee.

For the purposes of this section (12950.1), "employer" means any person regularly employing 50 or more persons or regularly receiving the services of 50 or more persons providing services pursuant to a contract, or any person acting as an agent of an employer, directly or indirectly, the state, or any political or civil subdivision of the state, and cities.

This means that even the General Contractors with fewer than 50 employees could find that they have to provide this sexual harassment training.

If the number of their subcontractor(s) employees (this means everyone including office personnel, not just superintendents and installers) added to the GC's own employees (again including everyone) equals more than 50, then the GC is going to have to provide this training.

Some questions to consider:

  • What if the GC and each Subcontractor on the job has less than 50
    employees but together the total number of employees is over 50?
    Is the GC responsible to train the Subcontractors' supervisory employees?
  • Can a clause be included in the contract that requires the Subcontractor
    himself to fulfill this requirement and train his own supervisory employees?
  • Is the GC liable if the Subcontractor didn't really conduct the sexual
    harassment training, even if the Sub stated that he did conduct the
    training?
  • What if the Sub has less than 50 employees and therefore does not have
    a sexual harassment training program in place?
  • Does the GC need a form from his Subcontractors identifying who the
    supervisory employees are and certifying that the supervisory employees
    have received the training?
  • Can you require your Subcontractor(s) supervisory employees to participate
    in your sexual harassment training and prevention program in lieu of having
    the Subcontractor provide the training himself?

It's important to note that this can't be a simple meeting behind closed doors like those of the past, a wink and a nod and the understanding that all is understood. (huh? ;)

The text of 12950.1 even tells the employer how to conduct the training and what it shall include...

"The training and education required by this section shall include
information and practical guidance regarding the federal and state
statutory provisions concerning the prohibition against and the
prevention and correction of sexual harassment and the remedies
available to victims of sexual harassment in employment. The
training and education shall also include practical examples aimed
at instructing supervisors in the prevention of harassment,
discrimination, and retaliation, and shall be presented by trainers
or educators with knowledge and expertise in the prevention of
harassment, discrimination, and retaliation."

What to do:

  • Get answers to any questions you may have, such as those I've listed
    above and
  • Start checking out sexual harassment training and prevention solution
    providers and programs

Be sure that whatever provider/program you go with, that they have the following:

  • Information and practical guidance regarding the federal and state statutory
    provisions
    , concerning the prohibition against and the prevention and
    correction of sexual harassment and the remedies available to victims of
    sexual harassment in employment
  • Practical examples aimed at instructing supervisors in the prevention of
    harassment, discrimination, and retaliation
  • Trainers or educators with knowledge and expertise in the prevention
    of harassment, discrimination, and retaliation

The California Chamber of Commerce, local law firms and human resource companies offer training programs that include online and in-person presentations. Fees are charged per hour, per participant or per presentation, depending on the company and the circumstances.

*Any employer who has provided this training and education to a supervisory employee after January 1, 2003, is not required to provide training and education by the January 1, 2006, deadline. After January 1, 2006, each employer covered by this section shall provide sexual harassment training and education to each supervisory employee once every two years.


Diane Dennis is the Webmistress of www.TheContractorsGroup.com, a website designed to help contractors through the myriad of pitfalls that can jump into their path. She's a graduate of "The School Of Hard Knocks" and she's always willing to share her experiences, even when no one wants to listen... ;) Please note that this article is not to be taken as legal advice. For questions of a legal nature please contact an attorney. This article can be reprinted provided it is done so in its entirety including this bio. If you do use this article, please let Diane know by sending an email to her at diane@thecontractorsgroup.com