The clock is ticking for co-op and condo boards to comply with workplace sexual harassment training rules put in place last fall by the city and state. The state law requires that all employers, including co-ops and condos with building staffs, to have a system for providing digital interactive annual sexual harassment training by Oct. 9. The city, meanwhile, required that employers start offering harassment training this past April 1, with a mandate that all employees complete the annual training within 12 months.
The city says it has sent mailers about the new rules in multiple languages to nearly 275,000 small businesses throughout the five boroughs, while the state has conducted outreach to businesses throughout New York, Crain’s reports. But whether businesses are ready for the new requirements, experts say, may still vary based on the resources available to them.
The mandatory training for staffers on how to identify and report sexual harassment in the workplace is a response to the mushrooming #MeToo movement It’s just one of a flurry of new rules governing employee relations enacted by both the city and state in recent months. Other new rules govern employees’ hair, religious practices, medical needs, free time to vote, even time for lactation.
“What New York City employers need to understand is they are part of both the city and state and need to ensure they comply with both requirements,” says Andrew Rawson, chief learning officer for Traliant, a company that offers interactive sexual harassment training.
“A lot of employers are using digital interactive training, which is absolutely fine as long as the portal asks you questions,” said Richard Greenberg, a principal in the New York office of employment law firm Jackson Lewis. “Those can be offered by third parties, insurance companies, law firms. I’m interested to see a year from now in surveys what percentage used each different option.”
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