Rights of Domestic Violence Victims In the Workplace


Labor Code Section 230.1

Labor Code section 230.1 protects California workers who are victims of domestic violence. This law protects employees by making it illegal for an employer to discriminate or retaliate against, or discharge an employee who is a victim of domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking for taking time off work to seek medical attention, obtain services from a domestic violence shelter or program, obtain psychological counseling, or participate in safety planning.

AB 2337

On Sept. 14th, 2016 AB 2337 was signed into law by then Governor Jerry Brown. The bill expanded the employer notice requirements under Labor Code section 230.1. It states that employers of 25 or more are required to provide written notice to their employees of their right to take leave to handle domestic violence, sexual assault or stalking issues. Employers must inform each employee of his or her rights up or request or upon hire. The Labor Commissioner posted on online form that details the notice requirements. Employers may use this form or create their own notice that is “substantially similar in content and clarity to the form developed by the Labor Commissioner.”

What Does this Mean for Women in Danger?

With the advent of these additions to the law, women (or men) who are the subject of targeted violence and/or harassment have a new and effective tool to retain control of their lives. Using these laws appropriately can help them maintain their careers and manage a supported transition from a life of danger and threat to one in which they can call the shots.

If you or someone you love is in this position, call an attorney or a battered women’s hotline, and find out what you need to provide to your employer to allow you to extract yourself from any situation in which you feel unsafe, threatened, or in real danger for your life. There are many of us in the community-at-large who will support you, and your employer must now cooperate in your efforts to secure an environment free of threats and or physical danger from a partner, spouse or stalker who is putting any of your personal safety in jeopardy. Speak up, speak out, and protect yourself from those who may seek to harm you.

domestic violence laws have changed to protect women in the workplace
Domestic Violence Victims Have Rights – Know Them.

The Takeaway

Domestic violence victims have rights within the workplace. Employers are required to give notice of those rights to their employees. They are also required to allow victims of domestic violence or stalking the necessary time off work to deal with these issues, as long as they have proper documentation. If you are a victim of domestic violence, sexual assault or stalking, and have been discriminated or retaliated against, or discharged because of absences related to your ordeal, contact an employment attorney.

Lazear Mack, LLP
436 14th Street, Suite 1117
Oakland, CA 94612
(510) 735-6316
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