Last September, California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law AB 2337, an employment related law that amended the State’s Labor Code.
Specifically, in enacting AB 2337, the California legislature recognized that many employees were woefully unaware of the domestic-violence related protections and rights currently afforded to them pursuant to Section 230 of the Labor Code.
What Are Some Domestic-Violence Related Employee Rights Provided by Section 230 of California’s Labor Code?
As one example, Section 230.1(a) of the Labor Code provides that:
. . .[A]n employer with 25 or more employees shall not discharge, or in any manner discriminate or retaliate against, an employee who is a victim of domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking for taking time off from work for any of the following purposes:
(1) To seek medical attention for injuries caused by domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking.
(2) To obtain services from a domestic violence shelter, program, or rape crisis center as a result of domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking.
(3) To obtain psychological counseling related to an experience of domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking.
(4) To participate in safety planning and take other actions to increase safety from future domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking, including temporary or permanent relocation.
Another example is found in Section 230.1(c), which provides that:
An employee who is discharged, threatened with discharge, demoted, suspended, or in any other manner discriminated or retaliated against in the terms and conditions of employment by his or her employer because the employee has taken time off for a purpose set forth in subdivision (a) is entitled to reinstatement and reimbursement for lost wages and work benefits caused by the acts of the employer, as well as appropriate equitable relief. An employer who willfully refuses to rehire, promote, or otherwise restore an employee or former employee who has been determined to be eligible for rehiring or promotion by a grievance procedure or hearing authorized by law is guilty of a misdemeanor.
The Notice Requirements of AB 2337: Informing Employees of Their Domestic-Violence Related Rights
In order to increase overall awareness of these employee rights and protections regarding domestic violence, AB 2337 amended Section 230.1 of the Labor Code to require that employers must inform each and every employee of these rights, in writing, upon hire and at any time upon request.
Additionally, AB 2337 directed that by July 1, 2017, the Labor Commissioner must develop and post a form that employers may use to comply and satisfy the relevant notice/disclosure requirements. Pursuant to the law, an employer’s mandate to comply with the notice requirements became effective only when the Labor Commissioner posted the new form.
The New Form
As ordered, the Labor Commissioner (i.e., the CA Division of Labor Standards Enforcement) published the form, “RIGHTS OF VICTIMS OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE, SEXUAL ASSAULT AND STALKING”, in both English and Spanish. These forms and others can also be found at the DLSE web page.
The law does not require a California employer to use the exact form published by the Labor Commissioner, but the form must be “substantially similar in content and clarity.”
Contact A California Employment Law Attorney Today
It is important for California employers to update their hiring procedures so as to include the new notice. If you have any questions regarding employer notice requirements, or any other labor employment matter, we are here to help.
Whether you are facing possible litigation, or whether you would like to make certain your business is compliant with current law, please contact us today to schedule a consultation with an experienced, knowledgeable California employment law attorney today.