From HRDive, Kara Hertzog discusses how laws requiring training on sexual harassment apply to independent contractors and other contingent workers. Kara writes:
What about contingent workers?
It’s often unclear how these laws affect contract workers, which is no small matter. The number of gig workers is expected to rise to more than 86 million by 2027, according to Statista. That’s more than half the projected workforce.
Contract workers often are treated differently than employees because they may have a different employer, work different hours or work in a different place. That’s all standard practice. But when it comes to sexual harassment, all claims should be taken seriously and treated the same. Any claim involving contractors should be investigated just as thoroughly as a claim involving an employee.
In addition, some laws are beginning to provide clarity regarding contingent workers. New York state human rights human rights law, for example, now includes protections against sexual harassment for contractors, vendors, consultants and others.
And when it comes to sexual harassment training, contract workers should be included. If they have another employer, that agency can conduct the training, or the contracting company can handle it. My company, for example, uses an online training tool that is part of the onboarding process for contract workers in states with harassment training requirements. Workers are required to complete the training within their first 30 days of work, but getting it done on the first day is ideal.
It’s also crucial to document that the training was completed, and ensure that workers understand its importance. Employers can make clear they don’t tolerate sexual harassment – a position that starts with leadership and culture at each company.
Read the full story at How do independent contractors fit into sexual harassment training rules? | HR Dive