April 12 – Gov. Cuomo signed a law regarding sexual harassment in the workplace
On April 12, 2018, Governor Cuomo signed Senate Bill 7507C. This new law implements new rules addressing sexual harassment in the workplace. It:
- requires all bids submitted to the state or state agency or department to contain certifications regarding sexual harassment
- prohibits employment agreements from requiring mandatory arbitration of allegations or claims of sexual harassment
- prohibits nondisclosure agreements from including agreements or settlements involving sexual harassment
- establishes a model policy about preventing sexual harassment and a model training program to about prevent workplace sexual harassment
- extends protections against sexual harassment to non-employees
The new law becomes effective on October 1, 2018.
January 19 – The New York City Council passed an ordinance allowing employees to take two temporary schedule changes per calendar year
On January 19, 2018, the New York City Council passed Int 1399-2016. This new law requires employers to allow employees to take two temporary schedule changes per calendar year. These temporary schedule change can include paid time off, remote work, changing work hours, and unpaid leave. The temporary schedule changes must relate to a caregiving emergency, a legal proceeding or hearing for subsistence benefits, or any circumstance that would constitute a basis for the permissible use of safe time or sick time. The law imposes other related requirements and limitations.
The new law becomes effective on July 18, 2018.
January 11 – The New York City Council passed an ordinance redefining the definitions of terms of its human rights law
On January 11, 2018, the New York City Council passed Int 1186-2016. This ordinance redefines the definitions of the terms sexual orientation and gender in its human rights law.
The term sexual orientation now means, “an individual’s actual or perceived romantic, physical or sexual attraction to other persons, or lack thereof, on the basis of gender. A continuum of sexual orientation exists and includes, but is not limited to, heterosexuality, homosexuality, [or] bisexuality, asexuality, and pansexuality.”
The term gender now means, “actual or perceived sex [and shall also include a person’s gender identity, self-image, appearance, behavior or expression, whether or not that gender identity, self-image, appearance, behavior or expression is different from that traditionally associated with the legal], gender identity, and gender expression including a person’s actual or perceived gender-related self-image, appearance, behavior, expression, or other gender-related characteristic, regardless of the sex assigned to that person at birth.
The new law becomes effective on May 11, 2018.