Sexual harassment has been illegal in Delaware workplaces for many years. In December 2018, new regulations were signed into law clarifying employers’ responsibilities for preventing sexual harassment and mandating training for employees and managers.
The law requires that Delaware employers with 50 or more employees are required to provide training on sexual harassment prevention for managers as well as non-managerial employees. When determining the number of employees they have, employers must take into account all employees, regardless of status: full-time, part-time, seasonal, temporary, as well as interns, and apprentices.
Additional key points include:
- Employers must provide training to current employees by January 1, 2020
- All new hires must receive training within one year of their hire date
- After the initial training, employees and managers must be retrained on harassment prevention every two years
- Training programs must be interactive and provide instruct on:
- The illegality of sexual harassment
- The definition of sexual harassment using examples
- The legal remedies and complaint process available to the employee
- Directions on how to contact the Department of Labor
- The legal prohibition against retaliation.
- Training for managers must cover the specific responsibilities of a supervisor in preventing and correcting sexual harassment as well as the legal prohibition against retaliation.
Penalties for Not Complying
Specific penalties for non-compliance are not spelled out under the Delaware law. However, it’s important to note that an employer can avoid liability for sexual harassment by proving that:
- They exercised methods to prevent and correct sexual harassment in the workplace
- The employee did not take advantage of any preventive or corrective opportunities provided by the employer.
This highlights the importance of addressing sexual harassment incidents immediately and thoroughly and providing anti-sexual harassment training as mandated by the state.
Ryley Learning offers an e-learning course that complies with Delaware’s sexual harassment prevention training requirements. The core course is designed for corporate-wide training and includes animated episodes, real-life scenarios, and interactive activities to ensure understanding.