When a city or state passes a new kind of employment law or practice, you can expect other locations to follow their lead. We’ve seen this with paid sick leave, ban the box, social media privacy laws, and other legislation.
This year will have its own trending employment laws and best practices. Here are a few to keep your eye on:
Sexual harassment prevention: With the public hearing every day about new harassment allegations, employers are looking for better ways to prevent sexual harassment in the workplace. Training is necessary and important—and sometimes required by law—but it’s only one preventative step. Accountability is also a must, as is a culture of trust so when harassment happens, victims know their reports will be addressed and the harassment will stop.
Bans on salary history inquiries: Oregon, Delaware, and California have salary history bans already in effect. New York City does as well. A ban in Massachusetts will go into effect in July of this year. These laws prohibit employers from inquiring about a candidate’s current or previous wages or salary. They’re intended to decrease pay disparity
Predictive schedules: The cities of San Francisco, Emeryville, Seattle, and New York and the state of Oregon have predictive-scheduling requirements for certain employers in retail, food service, and hospitality. Likely more states and cities will soon follow their lead. These laws typically require employers to provide advance notice on schedules and limit the conditions in which an employer can make last-minute changes to the schedule.
Pregnancy accommodation expansions: Washington, Massachusetts, and the City of San Francisco have each passed mandatory pregnancy accommodation laws. These laws require that employers provide specific workplace accommodations, even if the employee isn’t suffering from a pregnancy-related disability.