California labor laws now cover smaller businesses

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Posted by Legal Team On January 22, 2018

Many factors have led to the success and growth of California’s economy. One of the greatest contributors is the attractive environment for workers of all types in a diversified economy that has a place for everyone.

The new year brought a new batch of state laws designed to keep these workers safe, productive and secure in their jobs. Some of the new laws created the same protections at smaller workplaces that previously existed for larger ones, while others introduced new protections to prevent offensive behavior or discriminatory practices in hiring and management.

California Senate Bill 396 expanded the requirements for sexual harassment training in small businesses, including operators in the wine industry. Two hours of training to prevent harassment based on sexual expression, gender identity and related issues is now required for managers every two years. These training sessions must include real examples of inappropriate sexual behavior to fulfill legal requirements.

A new expansion of California’s Fair Pay Act now prohibits several types of wage discrimination in public employment. The law had previously only covered private employers. The state labor commissioner also received a newly expanded ability to address discrimination complaints, such obtaining court orders to prevent dismissal of employees when discrimination is suspected.

Farm labor contractors in the Golden State must also receive sexual harassment training to be fully licensed in the state. This must be conducted in a language and form understood by all managers and contractors involved.

Anyone who suspects discrimination in workplace treatment or dismissal has the right to bring a complaint against their employer or former employer in civil court. An attorney may help identify the best chances for success and guide a case to settlement or a jury verdict.

Source: North Bay Business Journal, “California expands required sexual-harassment training,” accessed Jan. 22, 2018