Illinois employers are mandated to provide sexual harassment prevention training by December 31, 2020. Under the Illinois Workplace Transparency Act (WTA), employers with one or more employees are required to provide annual sexual harassment prevention training to all employees by December 31, 2020. FrontlineCo, an association management firm with offices in Chicago and Springfield, has developed an online education and tracking tool to assist businesses, without a dedicated human resources department, remain compliant with sexual harassment prevention laws.
To combat rising cases of sexual harassment and discrimination in the workplace, the Illinois Department of Human Rights (IDHR) issued a set of minimum standard training requirements that every employer must follow to ensure proper preventative measures are in place. Employers can provide their own internal training or use a third-party vendor, but they must meet minimum statutory requirements as established by IDHR:
- an explanation of sexual harassment consistent with the IHRA;
- examples of conduct that constitutes unlawful sexual harassment;
- a summary of relevant federal and State statutory provisions concerning sexual harassment, including remedies available to victims of sexual harassment; and
- a summary of responsibilities of employers in the prevention, investigation, and corrective measures of sexual harassment.
“We initially began to see a need for this tool with smaller businesses that require a simple and affordable way to train, track and document sexual harassment prevention training requirements, and retain access to records 24/7,” said Kim Robinson, President of FrontlineCo. “Our e-training program helps employers meet the Illinois Department of Human Rights mandated annual sexual harassment training requirements and is terrific to use with transitional or mobile workforces.”
Training is required for all short-term, part-time and full-time employees, regardless of the duration of their employment. Employers are expected to train all new employees and be able to provide documentation that all employees have completed sexual harassment prevention training on an annual basis.
Legal ramifications for employers who do not comply with IDHR requirements are subject to civil penalty in violation of Section 2-109. An employer will be issued a notice to comply within 30 days, and failure to respond will result in IDHR petitioning the Illinois Human Rights Commission for entry of an order imposing a civil penalty against the employer.
For more information, or to access FrontlineCo’s sexual harassment prevention tracking and training solution for your business, visit the website at https://frontlineco.com/product/sexual-harassment-prevention-e-training/. The training is provided in video format with an online quiz that documents successful completion. In addition, the module is offered in both English and Spanish and online certificates are provided. Employers are also provided with a login to manage a secure and searchable database of their employees training records for easy access to documentation.
All Illinois employees have the right to file a complaint against their employer if they believe the training requirements are not being met. Complaints can be filed by completing a form on the Department of Human Rights website at www.illinois.gov/dhr/training or by calling IDHR at (312) 814-6278.