In October 2017, California Governor Brown approved signed several new employment laws. Unfortunately, none of these bills are helpful for the California employer. So how will this affect you? Read more about details of the new employment laws below:
A California employer who makes a preliminary decision to deny employment based on individualized assessment now must provide the applicant for the job a written notification of the decision that identifies the disqualifying reasons and notifies the applicant that they may provide a response that includes evidence challenging the accuracy of the conviction information and/or demonstrating rehabilitation or other mitigating circumstances.
The employer must also provide a copy of the conviction history report if any.
If the applicant notifies the employer in writing that they dispute the accuracy of the conviction history and is obtaining evidence to support that assertion, they must be given an additional 5 business days to respond to the notice.
The employer is required to consider any information submitted by the applicant before making a final decision.
If a final decision is made to deny employment, the employer again must provide written notification to the applicant and inform the applicant of their right to file a complaint with the Department of Fair Employment and Housing and/or of any internal appeal rights the applicant may have to challenge the decision.
Covered California employers should familiarize themselves with the requirements of this new law and modify their employment applications and hiring processes accordingly.
AB 46: This new law simply provides that California’s Equal Pay Act applies to public employers just as it applies to private employers.
SB 396: California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act already require employers with 50 or more employees to provide at least 2 hours of prescribed training and education regarding sexual harassment to all supervisory employees within 6 months of their assumption of a supervisory position and once every 2 years thereafter.
Effective January 1, 2018, this new law requires covered employers to include information on harassment based on gender identity, gender expression, and sexual orientation as a component of that prescribed training.
Employers also have to publish new/amended posters on the subjects of harassment and transgender rights.
On the positive side, the Governor did veto the following bills that would have imposed new burdens on California employers: AB 978: This bill would have required an employer who receives a written request for a paper or electronic copy of its written injury prevention program from a current employee, or their authorized representative, to comply with the request as soon as practicable, but no later than 10 business days from the date the employer receives the request, and to provide the copy of the written injury prevention program free of charge.
The bill would have further required covered employers, beginning July 1, 2020and biennially thereafter, to provide the data collected to the Secretary of State, who would then publish it on an Internet site available to the public.
AB 569: This bill would have added a new provision to the Labor Code prohibiting employers from taking adverse action against an employee based on the employee’s reproductive health care decisions, including but not limited to the use of any device, drug, or medical service, and would have exposed employers to new litigation risk.
Employers with employee handbooks would be required to include notice of these rights and remedies in the handbook.
Understanding these new employment laws can be complicated! If you need legal advice or direction, contact the Law Office of Richard. N. Grey for more information or to set up an appointment at (818) 345-9780 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.