Sexual harassment prevention training guidelines vary by state. Some states recommend training; others mandate separate training for managers and employees. It's therefore important that the person leading your training is qualified.
Qualified trainers can be attorneys, professors or instructors, human resources professionals, or harassment prevention consultants. Attorneys must have been admitted to practice in any jurisdiction in the United States for at least two years and have employment law issues related to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 or to the FEHA as part of their practices.
HR professionals or harassment prevention consultants must have a minimum of two years of practical experience in at least one of the following:
- Designing or conducting discrimination, retaliation and sexual harassment prevention training
- Responding to sexual harassment complaints or other discrimination complaints
- Conducting investigations of sexual harassment complaints
- Advising employers or employees regarding discrimination, retaliation and sexual harassment prevention
Individuals who do not meet the qualifications of a trainer as an attorney, HR professional, harassment prevention consultant, professor or instructor because they lack the requisite years of experience may teach with another trainer in classroom (online or in person). The trainer must supervise these individuals must be available throughout the training session.
All trainers must have the ability to teach about the following topics:
- Identifying unlawful harassment, discriminatory and retaliatory behavior under both the FEHA and federal law
- Steps to address harassment in the workplace
- Reporting complaints of harassment
- Reporting obligation of supervisors when aware of harassment, discrimination or retaliation.
- Responding to complaints of harassment.
- Employer's obligation to conduct an investigation.
- Identifying retaliation and how to avoid it.
- Essential components of a policy against harassment.
- Effect of harassment on the harasser, victims, employers and co-workers.
As workplaces continues to evolve in 2021, it's important to have qualified people at the helm when implementing sexual harassment training for your employees. Delivering training that's accessible and relatable is essential. It ensures a safe and inclusive workplace. Using online, video, and mobile-based content are just some of the ways employers are achieving that.