A new labor law in California seeks to aid janitorial workers in the fight against sexual harassment and sexual assault on-the-job. Assembly Bill 1978 was signed recently by Gov. Jerry Brown (D) with the goal of helping property service workers understand what their rights are and to protect themselves from sexual harassment.
Janitorial employers will now be required to register with the California Division of Labor Standards Enforcement, which will provide in-person prevention training on sexual violence and sexual harassment for both workers and employers. Workers and supervisors will receive written pamphlets that detail what sexual harassment is and what resources are available if it happens to them. The registration requirement will officially begin July 1, 2018. Those who don’t comply with the statute could face revocation of their license or be required to pay a maximum $10,000 in fines.
Sponsored by Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez (D-San Diego), the bill promises to add both transparency and accountability in an industry that typically employs a high number of disadvantaged workers (Latina females in particular) who are vulnerable to sexual harassment and sexual violence because they often work alone, night shifts and fear deportation if they complain. Gonzalez said these workers need appropriate training and protections to ensure their safety and adequate recourse when a crime or legal violation does occur. Continue Reading ›