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e-Alert – Sexual Harassment Training is Now Mandatory in Washington State for Certain Employers

By July 29, 2019No Comments


Washington State is among several other states in the country that have implemented a sexual harassment training requirement for specific employers. The types of businesses and workers covered under this law include hotels, motels, retail corporations, security guard entities, and property service contractors. Property service contractors employ workers that provide commercial janitorial services.


Covered employers under this law are required to create and implement a sexual harassment policy and deliver mandatory sexual harassment training to their managers, supervisors, and employees. Employers must also provide employees with a list of resources they can use, including contact information for the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the Washington State Human Rights Commission, and local advocacy groups that focus on preventing sexual harassment and sexual assault. They must also give each covered employee a “panic button.” The “panic button” is an emergency contact device that the employee carries, which can summon assistance from another worker, security guard, or employer representative.

Hotels and motels that have 60 or more rooms at their establishments are required to comply with this law no later than January 1, 2020. The rest of the affected employers under this new law must meet these requirements by January 1, 2021.

Next Steps for Employers

  • If you are a covered employer, you must update your handbook/policy and complete this mandatory training by either January 1, 2020, or January 1, 2021, depending on your type of business.
  • Develop and disseminate the required list of agencies and organizations to employees.
  • If you need assistance with the required sexual harassment prevention training, please contact us.
  • If you are a Full-Service or Virtual HR client and would like our assistance with updating your handbook and sexual harassment prevention policy, please email us.

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This content is provided with the understanding that HR Knowledge is not rendering legal advice. While every effort is made to provide current information, the law changes regularly and laws may vary depending on the state or municipality. The material is made available for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for legal advice or your professional judgment. You should review applicable laws in your jurisdiction and consult experienced counsel for legal advice. If you have any questions regarding this content, please contact HR Knowledge at 508.339.1300 or email us.