For New York employers, the standards for sexual harassment may be shifting. The state requires all employers to adopt its model sex harassment policy or craft one that equals or exceeds minimum standards. Recently, the New York State Department of Labor released a new model policy developed in conjunction with the New York State Division of Human Rights.
This guidance sheds fresh light on how state enforcers are thinking about sexual harassment and employer responsibilities. New York employers beware – while not a statute, the guidance signals a clear and continued shift towards employees. To emphasize the new model, the guidance provides a host of concrete examples to guide employees, companies, and courts alike in deciding when conduct crosses the line into harassment. However, whether or not the judges will adopt the same expansive views as the agencies have, remains to be seen.
Here’s what you need to know:
The Model Policy Reflects the Law’s Lowered Bar for Wrongdoing
Back in 2019, lawmakers drastically upended the standard for what constitutes sexual harassment by removing the long-standard “severe and pervasive” requirement for conduct to be considered illegal. We’ve covered this in-depth.
Continue Reading Notice for New York Employers: State Issues Updated Guidance on Sex Harassment