Due to the recent passage of two New York City laws—the Temporary Schedule Change Law and the Stop Sexual Harassment Act—our NYC poster is getting quite a makeover!
Keep reading to find out employer requirements and employee benefits related to these laws.
Temporary Schedule Change Law
The NYC Department of Consumer Affairs has released a notice for the Temporary Schedule Change Law, which has an effective date of July 18, 2018. This new law applies to all employees who work 80 or more hours per calendar year in New York City and who have worked for their employer for 120 or more days, regardless of immigration status. Individuals who are covered under the law include:
- Full-time and part-time employees
- Transitional jobs program employees
- Employees who are family members but not owners (except in agriculture)
- Employees who live outside of New York City
Under the law, covered employees have a right to temporary changes to their work schedule on up to two occasions each calendar year for certain personal events. These events may include any of the following:
- To care for a child under the age of 18
- To care for a “care recipient”—a family or household member who has a disability and relies on the employee for medical care or help with the needs of daily living
- To attend a legal proceeding or hearing related to public benefits for the employee, a family member, the employee’s minor child, or a care recipient
- For any other reason the employee may use leave under the NYC Paid Safe and Sick leave Law
The law defines a “temporary change” as an adjustment to an employee’s usual work schedule, which may include using short-term unpaid leave or paid time off, working remotely, or swapping or shifting work hours. Employers should note that they may not require an employee to use leave earned under the NYC Paid Safe and Sick Leave Law for a temporary schedule change.
The notice for the Temporary Schedule Change Law states that employers may not punish, penalize, retaliate, or take any other action against employees to stop or deter them from exercising their rights under the law.
If employees are retaliated against in any way, the notice advises them to immediately contact the Office of Labor Policy & Standards (OLPS) via the Department of Consumer Affairs website (nyc.gov/dca) or call 311 (212-NEW-YORK outside NYC) and ask for “temporary Schedule Change Law.” The OLPS is responsible for investigating and trying to solve all complaints.
Stop Sexual Harassment Act
The new Stop Sexual Harassment Act—part of the NYC Human Rights Law—is intended to address and prevent sexual harassment in the workplace. Effective September 6, 2018, all employers are required to provide notice of employees’ rights under the law in the form of a poster that must be displayed in both English and Spanish. In addition, employers must distribute a fact sheet to each employee at the time of hire. Here is a link to the fact sheet, which is available on the NYC Commission on Human Rights (CHR) website.
Our customers should note that only the English notice is available at this time; however, the CHR has informed us that the Spanish notice will be available in the next few weeks. Our Research Team will be keeping an eye out for that notice.
The Stop Sexual Harassment Act describes sexual harassment, a form of gender-based discrimination, as unwelcome verbal or physical behavior based on a person’s gender. Examples include:
- Unwelcome or inappropriate touching of employees
- Making sexist remarks or derogatory comments
- Conditioning promotions or other opportunities on sexual favors
- Threatening or engaging in adverse action after an employee refuses a sexual advance
Employers may not retaliate against employees who oppose or speak out against sexual harassment in the workplace. Examples of retaliation include demoting an employee or denying an employee a promotion, or more subtle behavior such as increasing an employee’s workload or transferring an employee to a location that is less desirable.
The law protects employees against retaliation if they have “a good faith belief” that their employer acted illegally—even if it is determined that the employee was mistaken.
The notice for the Act encourages employees who witness or experience sexual harassment in the workplace to report the incident as soon as possible to a manager or someone in the Human Resources department. Employees may also report sexual harassment to the NYC Commission on Human Rights by calling 718-722-3131 or visiting the CHR’s website (NYC.gov/HumanRights). Sexual harassment complaints may be filed anonymously.
As we reported earlier this year, the Act also includes a training requirement. Effective April 1, 2019, employers with 15 or more employees must conduct annual anti-sexual harassment training for all employees, including managers and interns. The Commission on Human Rights is responsible for developing an online interactive training module that employers may use to satisfy this requirement.
Let Us Keep You in Compliance
If you order our City/County Poster 1-Year Plan, you will automatically receive the updated New York City poster as soon as it is available. And because we provide free poster updates for mandatory changes—no matter how many occur during the plan year—you can always count on Poster Compliance Center to keep you in compliance!