New Reporting Requirements Under The Illinois Workplace Transparency Act
Starting July 1, 2020, the new Illinois Workplace Transparency Act will require all Illinois employers to disclose on an annual basis to the Illinois Department of Human Rights certain information about adverse judgments or administrative rulings involving discrimination or harassment based on sex, race, color, national origin, religion, age, disability, military status or unfavorable discharge from military status, sexual orientation or gender identity and discrimination or harassment based on any other characteristic protected under the Illinois Human Rights Act.
In light of the reporting requirements of the new Workplace Transparency Act, and the amendments to the Illinois Human Rights Act which now require all Illinois employers to provide sexual harassment prevention training, employers selecting a harassment prevention program should consider the following:
The training must comply with the requirements of the Human Rights Act.
The training must be effective in preventing harassment. Training will not absolve an employer of liability for harassment although proper training may be a mitigating factor in the EEOC or DHR fashioning a remedy.
The training should focus on preventing harassment based upon membership in all protected classes, not just sexual harassment.
The training should empower employees to come forward and report harassment without fear of not being taken seriously or of being subjected to retaliation.
The training should not be generic but should provide training on the employer’s anti-harassment policy. Employees need to know what their employer’s policy says and how to avail themselves of the protections afforded by the policy.
As the ultimate goal of training is to stop harassment in the workplace, the cost or convenience of the training to the employer should not be a determining factor. Many employers opt for in-person training allowing employees to participate in an interactive process which has been found to have a greater impact on changing behaviors than sitting in front of a computer to fulfill a requirement to become, or remain, employed. The cost of defending a harassment or discrimination claim will far exceed the cost of effective training.
For assistance in meeting the obligations of these new laws, including harassment prevention training, please contact Anthony Ashenhurst or call us at 630-948-4807.
Articles distributed by Malecki & Brooks Law Group, LLC are advertisements and summaries for general information and discussion purposes only. They are not full analyses of the matters presented, legal, or otherwise, and may not be relied upon as legal advice.
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