New York State Sexual Harassment Law Policy and Training

The state’s most recent Sexual Harassment Prevention Law requires every employer in New York State, including all libraries, to adopt sexual harassment prevention policy and sexual harassment prevention training that meet or exceed the law’s minimum standards. Below you will find guidance and resources to help ensure your library is in compliance with this new law. The required training must be carried out for all library employees, trustees, and volunteers by October 9, 2019.

 

Policy

Under the new law, every employer in New York State is required to establish a sexual harassment prevention policy. This includes all libraries. The Department of Labor in consultation with the Division of Human Rights has established a model sexual harassment prevention policy, which libraries can customize and adopt. Libraries may choose to draft a similar policy on their own, but must make sure it meets or exceeds these minimum standards. There is also a model complaint form libraries can customize and use.

 

Training

Under the state’s Sexual Harassment Prevention Law, every employer in New York State is required to provide employees and non-employees with sexual harassment prevention training, which includes an interactive component, on an annual basis. This includes all libraries. This training must be completed for all staff, trustees, and volunteers by October 9, 2019. Training must also be administered annually for each employee and as soon as possible for any new hires. You can find resources and guidance below to help you meet the requirements set out in this law. Libraries that choose to create their own training programs should make sure they adhere to the training requirements set out by NYS.

  • Libraries are advised to customize and administer the following Training and Feedback Form to ensure library staff, trustees, and volunteers are trained, and records are retained in compliance with the requirements set out in the New York State Sexual Harassment Prevention law.

 

This Training and Feedback Form can be administered to library staff, trustees, and volunteers with or without a supervisor present. The form includes the following, which will ensure compliance with the NYS Sexual Harassment Prevention Law:

  • Links to sexual harassment prevention training videos from the NYS Department of Labor and NYS Department of Human Rights for staff, trustees, and volunteers to watch.
    • Sexual Harassment Prevention Training Part 1
    • Sexual Harassment Prevention Training Part 2: Case Studies
  • Acknowledgements and questions for staff, trustees, and volunteers to complete.
    • Acknowledgement that the trainee has received the library’s sexual harassment policy.
    • Questions about sexual harassment scenarios, procedure, policy, and prevention.
  • Space to ask questions about the training, sexual harassment, and sexual harassment prevention policy, which provides an interactive component.

After completion, library staff, trustees, and volunteers will submit this feedback form to the library director or personnel officer, who will keep it on file as proof that the employee has received this training.

Training must also be repeated annually for all library staff, trustees, and volunteers and completed as soon as possible for new hires.

 

More Information

  • NYS Sexual Harassment Law Employer Support – this page includes sample policies, videos, presentations and FAQ’s to help employers comply with the NYS Sexual Harassment Law and training requirements.
  • Sexual Harassment Prevention Law Webinar with Shari Fallon, Compensation Consultant at Cornell University from MHLS – this webinar reviews the NYS Sexual Harassment Law and how it applies to employers, with a focus on libraries.

 

 

For any other questions about NYS Sexual Harassment Law and how it pertains to your library, you can contact Casey Conlin.

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