SB 1300 goes into effect on Jan. 1, 2019, broadening the responsibility of businesses who have knowledge of harassment acts committed by nonemployees (such as volunteers, contractors, applicants and unpaid interns) and fail to take immediate corrective action.

The California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) prohibits harassment of any kind, whether based on sex, race, religious creed, color, national origin or ancestry.

SB 1300 prohibits businesses from requiring either of the following items as a condition of employment, or in exchange for a raise or bonus. As such, these items will be unenforceable:

(1) requiring the execution of a release of a claim or right under FEHA

(2) requiring an employee to sign a non-disparagement agreement or other document that purports to deny the employee the right to disclose information about unlawful acts in the workplace, including, but not limited to, sexual harassment.

Under the bill, businesses are authorized to provide bystander intervention training to their employees, but it is not required.

Furthermore, SB 1300 offers clarification on several court decisions:

• Affirms Harris v. Forklift Systems, 510 U.S. 17 (1993) decision

• Rejects United States Court of Appeals Ninth Circuit’s opinion in Brooks v. City of San Mateo, 229 F.3d 917 (2000)

• Affirms Reid v. Google, Inc., 50 Cal.4th 512 (2010) decision

• Rejects decision in Kelley v. Conco Companies, 196 Cal.App.4th 191 (2011)

• Affirms Nazir v. United Airlines, Inc., 178 Cal.App.4th 243 (2009) decision 

To learn more about SB 1300, go to the California Legislative Information website.

Disclaimer

The blog posts and e-newsletters from Lester & Cantrell, LLP are for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice. Please contact our attorneys to obtain advice with respect to any particular issue or problem. Use of and access to this Web site or any of the e-mail links contained within the site do not create an attorney-client relationship between Lester & Cantrell, LLP and the user. Any opinions expressed on our blogs/e-newsletters are the opinions of the individual author and may not reflect the opinions of the firm or any individual attorney.