The Chicago City Council recently amended the city’s sexual harassment laws to add anti-harassment policy and training requirements. And they haven’t given employers much time to comply. The below requirements take effect on July 1, 2022. These requirements apply to all employers who maintain a business facility in Chicago or are subject to Chicago licensing requirements.
It is essential that employers prepare now to meet these new requirements by revising their policies and getting prepared to train all employees. Our Labor and Employment attorneys are here to help with both.
All employers must have a written policy on sexual harassment, including at a minimum:
- A statement that sexual harassment is illegal in Chicago
- The definition of sexual harassment
- A description of the new training requirements
- Examples of prohibited conduct that constitute sexual harassment
- Details on how an individual can report an allegation of sexual harassment
- A description of legal services, including governmental, available to employees who may be victims of sexual harassment
- A statement that retaliation for reporting sexual harassment is illegal in Chicago
The written policy must be available in the employee’s primary language during their first week of employment. Employers must also display an anti-harassment poster.
All employers must provide the following training annually:
- 1 hour of sexual harassment prevention training for all employees
- 2 hours of sexual harassment prevention training for supervisors/managers
- 1 hour of bystander training for all employees
The Illinois State training template is sufficient for the sexual harassment prevention training for all employees. The City of Chicago will provide training modules for the additional hour of supervisor training and for the bystander training will be made available to employers below by July 1, 2022.
Statute of Limitations and Penalties
The Amendment also increased the time limit for filing a harassment claim from 300 days to 365 days. Penalties for violations increased from $500 – $1,000 per violation to $5,000 – $10,000 per violation.