Last month, New York State lawmakers finalized measures to address sexual harassment in the workplace requiring all employers to adopt written sexual harassment prevention policies and conduct anti-harassment training by October 9, 2019. To offer guidance on the new laws and perspectives from recent cases, Insite Risk Management hosted an event in New York City with experts in employment law and investigations who discussed issues and preventive strategies in the #MeToo era.
C-Suite executives – CEOs in particular – set the anti-harassment tone in an organization. Recent cases highlight how often CEOs may act above the law.
A best practice is to have live training sessions at least once annually, and make sure the CEO attends training sessions with all other employees to signal the importance of the eliminating harassment in the workplace.
Some respected law firms have received sanctions for their inappropriate management of investigators in #MeToo cases. Clients and their outside counsel are now asking for help to define what is ethically within the boundaries of an investigation.
A best practice is to develop an investigative plan for each complaint that has appropriate evaluation points.
New York City anti-harassment laws are being reviewed and when implemented may be more stringent than State statutes certain areas.