NYS Expands Anti-discrimination Legislation

NYS updates to anti-discrimination legislation

New York continues to expand the legislation related to anti-discrimination.

  • Increased Protections Related to Sexual Harassment Policy and Training: Effective August 12, 2019 every applicable NY employer must provide employees with the employer’s written sexual harassment prevention policy upon hire and at every annual sexual harassment training. The policy must be provided in English and in the language identified by each employee as their primary language. Additional requirements will be effective October 11, 2019, February 8, 2020 and August 12, 2020.
  • Religious Attire Discrimination: Effective October 8, 2019 NY employers are prohibited from discriminating against any person based on their attire, clothing, or facial hair that is worn in accordance with their religion’s requirements. Employers should ensure their policies and supervisors are updated by the effective date.
  • Pay Equity: Effective October 8, 2019 the state’s labor law is amended to prohibit wage differentials based on protected class status. Specifically, no employee who falls within any protected class may be paid a lesser wage than another, or on the basis of the employee’s protected status. Employers should ensure their policies and supervisors are updated by the effective date.
  • Immigrant Discrimination Penalties: Effective October 27, 2019 discrimination or retaliation against immigrant employees is added within the penalty provisions of NY Labor Law 215. Specifically, the law adds that to threaten, penalize, or in any other manner discriminate or retaliate against any employee including both threatening to contact (or contacting) U.S. immigration authorities; and otherwise reporting (or threatening to report) an employee’s suspected citizenship, immigration status, or that of an employee’s family or household member to a federal, state, or local agency. Employers should ensure their policies and supervisors are updated by the effective date.

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