In 2019, Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker signed Senate Bill 75, known as the Workplace Transparency Act. This bill amends the Illinois Human Rights Act and requires all employers in Illinois to provide sexual harassment training to all employees every year, starting in 2020. In addition to the yearly training, this law also makes changes to Illinois harassment and discrimination laws.

It’s also important to note that back in 2018, the state of Illinois passed Public Act 100-0762, which requires licensed professionals with continuing education requirements to show evidence they completed at least one hour of prevention training every year, starting in 2020.

Let’s discuss some of the requirements for Illinois sexual harassment training based on the Workplace Transparency Act.

Illinois Sexual Harassment Training - What You Need To Know
Companies must comply with the new legal requirements in Illinois, so Clear Law Institute has provided some guidance and answered some frequently asked questions. Read on as we discuss some of the changes and provisions included in the Workplace Transparency Act in Illinois.

Some of the changes that come up in this act, in addition to the annual requirements, are:
SB 75 amends the Illinois Human Rights Act to protect independent contractors in addition to regular employees from harassment and discrimination.

The new law now requires that labor organizations, local governments, and employers disclose to the Illinois Department of Human Rights (IDHR) the total number of judicial decisions involving sexual harassment or discrimination from the previous year. Employers may also be required to disclose during an investigation the total number of settlements involving sexual harassment and discrimination claims entered into during the last five years anywhere in the U.S. They must reveal beginning July 1, 2020, and then every year after by July 1.

SB 75 places significant restrictions on the use of non-disclosure agreements, non-disparagement clauses, and mandatory arbitration agreements for cases that involve harassment, discrimination, or retaliation.

The Workplace Transparency Act also expands the Victims Economic Security and Safety Act (VESSA) to allow domestic, sexual, or gender violence victims to take unpaid leave to seek medical help, legal assistance, counseling, and safety planning, and other assistance without penalty if requested. Victims of workplace harassment might also be entitled to take this leave.

This act also requires that by July 1, 2020, owners of hotels and casinos are required to provide portable safety notification devices to employees who frequently work alone in restrooms, guestrooms, casino floors, or other isolated spaces - at no cost to the employer. This device must allow them to call for help if they fear for their safety or witness any sexual assault or harassment. Casino and hotel owners must also provide all employees with an up-to-date copy of their anti-sexual harassment policy and post this policy in clearly visible areas of the hotel or casino, in both English and Spanish. This policy should also include reporting procedures and the prohibition against retaliation. 

Why Use Clear Law Institute’s Online Sexual Harassment Training for Illinois?
There are so many reasons why businesses and corporations choose Clear Law for Illinois sexual harassment training. Hundreds of employers rely on Clear Law Institute to provide trusted online sexual harassment training to their employees across the country. Our training:
  • Is 50 state-compliant, meaning it is compliant with Illinois state and federal law
  • Provides the user with the ability to ask questions and get those questions answered within one business day
  • Is kept legally up-to-date as the law changes, at no additional charge
  • Effectively uses cutting-edge instructional design principles.
  • Tracks who has completed the training every year, using Clear Law’s Learning Management System, which prevents employers from having to collect and track certificates manually
  • Meets IDFPR training requirements for continuing education
  • Can also be taken by attorneys for CLE Credit
  • Covers all forms of harassment, civility, bullying, and bystander intervention
The great thing about Clear Law’s training is that it is consistent with all required guidelines and court decisions. It covers not just sexual harassment but all forms of workplace harassment, discrimination, and retaliation. This course covers harassment based on gender identity and expression. The training we provide will address topics like workplace civility, bullying, and bystander intervention. We can also cover issues such as unconscious bias and teach employees what is not harassment, which helps prevent employees from filing harassment complaints about conduct that is not, in fact, harassment.

Required Legal Expertise for Illinois Sexual Harassment Training
To comply with state laws and court decisions from around the country, you must ensure that your training is developed and delivered by legal experts. Most states even go as far as to stipulate what should be taught by providing specific language that requires employers to have their training give by people with “expertise in the prevention of harassment, discrimination, and retaliation.” Many training providers are also required to have expertise in preventing harassment based on gender identity, gender expression, and sexual orientation.” The person or institution providing Illinois sexual harassment training must be an attorney, professor, human resource professional, or harassment prevention consultant with at least two years of employment law or harassment prevention expertise.

The in-house legal expertise at Clear Law Institute ensures that the course is legally accurate and up-to-date with the law changes. Our CEO, Michael Johnson, is one of the leading experts in harassment law in the country. As a former U.S. Department of Justice attorney and his experience as a graduate of Harvard Law School, Michael Johnson was one of the first lawyers handling the DOJ’s class-action style sexual harassment lawsuits. His expertise and knowledge have helped him develop online and in-person harassment training used by more than 2.5 million people. He’s worked with and provided training for large organizations such as Google, the United Nations, and the EEOC.

Clear Law Institute’s online Illinois sexual harassment training course, Positive Workplace: Preventing Harassment at Work, is used by hundreds of employers across the nation, including numerous Fortune 500 companies. Learn more about online harassment training and view a free course demo.