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Tiffanny Brosnan, partner at Snell & Wilmer LLP  

Click Here for Tiffanny Brosnan's Bio

Tuesday, December 09, 2008
Holiday parties
Wednesday, February 04, 2009
5 New Year’s resolutions for employers
Mandatory sexual harassment training
The end of the year is a good time to do some housekeeping. Just like cleaning out the rain gutters, mandatory sexual harassment training for supervisors is something that must be done every two years, according to California law. There was a flurry of activity at the end of 2005, with employers scrambling to do the training before the original Jan. 1, 2006, deadline. But have you done it again?
 
Employers with 50 or more employees must provide the training for all supervisors once every two years. In addition, all new supervisory employees must receive the training within six months of their assumption of a supervisory position. So, all employers of 50 or more employees should ask themselves two questions:

(1) When was the last time we did the training for all supervisory employees?
(2) When was the last time we promoted someone to a supervisory position?
 
If it is time to re-do the training, you can information from a number of sources, including employment attorneys who will customize the training to your workplace, or through Web-based providers such as the California Chamber of Commerce (calbizcentral.com/Store/Products/Pages/HPTC2.aspx) or Employer’s Group (employersgroup.com/traininganddevelopment/onlinetraining/index.shtml).
 
To convince your supervisors to attend the training, remind them that, unlike most of the rest of the country, in California the company is strictly liable for harassing conduct and can be individually liable as well.
 
That distinction, plus the fact that employers must pay for the training, are just two examples from a growing list of laws making it difficult – and expensive – to be an employer in California.