Reminder: The Oregon Workplace Fairness Act applies to ALL Oregon employers, and the deadline to comply is October 01, 2020.
Here’s what you need to know
Employers may no longer include non-disclosure, non-disparagement, and no-rehire provisions in employment or settlement agreements for discrimination, harassment, or sexual assault claims unless an employee requests those terms. All Oregon employers must provide a written policy to prevent discrimination and harassment. Guidelines for the policy are very specific and must include, at a minimum:
- A clear reporting process for employees to report harassment complaints
- A designated contact for reporting as well as an alternate individual to whom an employee can make reports of harassment
- A statement with the new statute of limitations period for when legal action can be pursued
- A statement that employees may not be required or coerced into entering a nondisclosure or non-disparagement agreement and explain what that means
- An explanation that an employee claiming to be affected by unlawful discrimination or sexual assault may voluntarily request to enter into a settlement, separation, or severance agreement which contains a nondisclosure, non-disparagement, or no-rehire provision only if the employee has at least seven days to revoke the agreement after signing
- A statement advising documentation of incidents of discrimination or sexual assault
Employers must make this policy available
- To all current employees
- To all new employees at the time of hire
- To any employee that discloses an incident of discrimination or sexual assault when the complaint is made.
Here’s what you need to do
It is critical for all Oregon employers to:
- Review and update your employee handbook to ensure compliance with the Oregon Workplace Fairness Act
- Train your managers and supervisors on the updated policy and procedures
- Set up a document retention procedure that accommodates the expanded statute of limitations
- Ensure any existing agreements are updated to comply with this new law, including non-disclosure, non-disparagement, employment agreements, or separation agreements
We are here to help!
Not sure where to start? Relax, our compliance specialists can provide you with the policy updates you need to comply with the Oregon Workplace Fairness Act.