If you have a business of any size, or manage a non-for-profit, in Illinois, you must comply with new anti-harassment training requirements by year-end 2020. On December 31, 2019, we published a blog regarding this new requirement which is an amendment to the Illinois Human Rights Act. Click on the link to read more: https://boodlaw.com/2019/12/workplace-transparency-act-how-it-affects-illinois-employers-3/.

The Illinois Department of Human Rights (“IDHR”) has provided resources to help employers meet this new requirement, including a model training program, available online at no cost. Alternatively, employers may develop their own sexual harassment prevention training program, or use one provided by their payroll company, but such programs must meet or exceed the legally required minimum standards for sexual harassment prevention training.

The minimum anti-harassment training standards include the following:

  • an explanation of sexual harassment as defined in the law;
  • examples of conduct that constitutes unlawful sexual harassment;
  • a summary of relevant federal and state statutory provisions concerning sexual harassment, including remedies available to victims of sexual harassment; and
  • a summary of employer responsibilities in the prevention, investigation, and corrective measures of sexual harassment.

All employees, including seasonal workers, part-time staff and interns, must be trained. Even independent contractors working onsite with staff should receive sexual harassment prevention training.

The IDHR’s published guidance also sets out record-keeping requirements.

  • Employers are required to keep a record of all trainings.
  • Records of a certificate of completion, or a signed employee acknowledgment, or course sign-in sheet must be maintained.
  • Upon IDHR request, employers will be required to produce records demonstrating all employees have been trained.
  • Employers that fail to comply with the training mandate can expect a formal “notice to show cause” for their noncompliance, as well as civil penalties if the noncompliance is not corrected within 30 days.

The IDHR training can be found at:

https://www2.illinois.gov/dhr/Training/Documents/IDHR-SHPT-2020-OCT-V2.pdf (English version)

https://www2.illinois.gov/dhr/Training/Documents/IDHR-SHPT-SP-2020-04-APR-V5.2-Notes.pdf (Spanish version).

We are available to answer your questions about any general issues concerning your business.

If you need assistance navigating these uncertain times, please reach out to us. Our law office has remained open and continues to serve our clients. We are available by telephone, email and Zoom.