How to Comply With California’s Expanded Anti-Harassment Training Requirements



n late 2017, California Gov. Jerry Brown signed Senate Bill 396, which expanded existing supervisor training requirements for employers. Under the bill, beginning in January 2018, content on harassment based on gender identity, gender expression and sexual orientation must be included in the training.

California law and regulations require employers in the Golden State with 50 or more employees to provide sexual harassment prevention training to all supervisors located in California. New supervisors must receive the training within six months of appointment to the position with supervisory authority. At a minimum, supervisors must receive training every two years.

Harassment Under California FEHA

The California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) prohibits harassment and discrimination and requires covered employers to implement measures to prevent harassment.

FEHA's anti-harassment provisions apply to organizations that regularly employ one or more people. FEHA applies to public and private employers.

A crucial step in harassment prevention involves training any employee with supervisory authority, which is defined as:

  • The authority to exercise independent judgment to hire, transfer, promote, discharge, assign, reward or discipline other employees.
  • The responsibility to direct them or address their grievances.
  • The authority to recommend any of the preceding actions.

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