As we settle into the new year, we should take a look back at all of the legislative changes made to New York policies in 2018 that could potentially affect you and your employees.

Anti-Harassment Policies

For guidance, the Department of Labor released model documents that are available here. Employers may choose to not adopt the state’s Model Sexual Harassment Policy, but they must ensure that their policies meet the state required minimum standards. For further information on whether your employee handbook is up to date with these policies, please contact our office.

New York Paid Family Leave Law

The state’s new Paid Family Law (PFL) requires employers to provide employee with paid leave. Under the PFL, employees may take leave to care for a family member due to the family member’s serious health condition or to bond with a newborn child during the first year of the child’s life or first year of a child’s placement for adoption or foster care with the employee.

Employee handbooks under the new PFL are required to include a written policy detailing employees’ rights and obligations under the law.

EEO Statement Including All Protected Classes

New York City Council passed a bill to prohibit employment discrimination and discriminatory harassment/violence based on an individual’s reproductive health choices, which goes into effect May 2019. Furthermore, New York State passed the Gender Expression Non-Discrimination Act (GENDA), which extends protection for transgender and non-gender-conforming persons.

It adds gender identity and expression as a protected class under New York Human Rights Law.

Lactation Accommodations

Paid Sick Time

Temporary Work Schedule Changes

‘Cooperative Dialogue’ Regarding Potential Accommodations

Handbook Violation of the New Salary History Ban Laws

Please feel free to contact our office with any questions regarding these policy changes.