Training Does Not Prevent Harassment

July, 2016


Remember the old adage that “Practice Makes Perfect?”  It would seem that corporate training to prevent workplace harassment would have an effect to curb such illegal conduct.  Not so, says the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

Harassment is generally defined as any unwelcome conduct based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, genetic information or sexual identity or expression.  It becomes unlawful when employees are forced to endure offensive behavior in order to keep their jobs or when the conduct is severe or pervasive enough to create a hostile work environment.
The EEOC’s Select Task Force on the Study of Harassment in the Workplace spent 18 months studying the past 30 years of corporate training on workplace harassment.  The study concluded with the finding that there is no data that harassment training works or has any effect on preventing workplace harassment.

Ironically, earlier this year, the Busca Law Firm recently settled a complaint of sexual harassment by a female client against her male supervisor at the Connecticut Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities working at the same employer named as a respondent four years earlier in a similar set of facts.  The case settled quickly with my client receiving a settlement that included most of her lost back pay.


A new statute was signed into law authorizing employers to use payroll cards to pay employees.  “An Act Allowing Employers To Pay Wages Using Payroll Cards,” (S.B. 211, Public Act 16-125) will take effect on October 1, 2016.  The Act defines a “payroll card” as “a stored value card or other device used by an employee to access wages from a payroll card account and that is redeemable at the employee’s election at multiple unaffiliated merchants or service providers, bank branches or automated teller machines.”  A “payroll card account” is defined as any bank or credit union account that is established through an employer to which transfers of wages, salary or compensation are made and accessed through a payroll card.

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