Mandatory Sexual Harassment Prevention Training
On September 29, 2004, Governor Schwarzenegger signed Assembly Bill 1825, which requires employers to train supervisors about sexual harassment prevention every two years. Such preventative training benefits the University of California community by improving employment practices and reducing the potential costs associated with sexual harassment complaints.
To comply with this law, in 2005 the University of California began offering two hours of sexual harassment prevention training that designated supervisors must repeat every two years. All supervisory employees who were employed as of July 1, 2005 were required to complete training by January 1, 2006. Going forward, the University of California requires sexual harassment prevention training for each newly hired or newly promoted supervisory employee in their first six months in a supervisory role.
The UC Office of the General Counsel provided a definition of supervisor as any individual with the authority "to hire, transfer, suspend, lay off, recall, promote, discharge, assign, reward, or discipline other employees, or the responsibility to direct them, or to adjust their grievances, or effectively recommend that action ..." (Fair Employment and Housing Act, Government Code Section 12926(r).) All academic administrators, such as provosts, deans, department chairs, and principal investigators, would fall within this definition and be subject to the mandatory training requirement. In addition, because most faculty members supervise teaching assistants and/or research assistants, all faculty are subject to the mandatory training requirement.
To facilitate campus compliance and ensure uniform systemwide standards, the Office of the President selected Workplace Answers (WPA) as a vendor to provide an online training program to all campuses. The Workplace Answers sexual harassment prevention course is fully interactive and has been customized to the University of California work environment in coordination with campus human resources personnel and Title IX Compliance Officers. Customization includes examples involving campuses, laboratories and medical centers, including issues that faculty encounter as supervisors. The program also keeps track of participation by employees subject to the training requirement.
If you have questions about the applicability of the new requirements, contact Pamela Thomason, Sexual Harassment Coordinator/IX Officer, at (310) 206-3417 or at [email protected]. For campus training assistance, contact Director Robert Gibson, CHR Training and Development at (310) 794-0879 or at [email protected]. UCLA Healthcare supervisors can contact Jerri Simpson, HR Director, Santa Monica Hospital at (310) 319-435 or at [email protected].