It will now be even easier for employees to access, understand, and enforce their rights to be free from unlawful workplace harassment and discrimination—with just the aim of their smartphone or other cherished device. The “EEO is the Law” poster, which has mandatorily adorned employee break room bulletin boards across the country, just had a makeover, and it includes an upgrade to the digital age. This proves that there can truly be a QR code for anything and everything—in this case saving workers precious seconds and adding convenience and expediency when they seek to file a U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) charge against their employer, make an inquiry, or learn more about the laws enforced by the EEOC.
The EEOC has just announced the release of the revamped poster, now entitled: “Know Your Rights: Workplace Discrimination is Illegal.” The EEOC touts that the new and “improved” poster helps both employers and employees to better understand their respective legal rights and responsibilities. According to the EEOC, the “Know Your Rights” poster includes the following upgrades:
- Uses straightforward language and formatting
- Notes that harassment is a prohibited form of discrimination
- Clarifies that sex discrimination includes discrimination based on pregnancy and related conditions, sexual orientation, or gender identity
- Adds a QR code for fast digital access to the EEOC’s “How to File a Charge” webpage
- Provides information about equal pay discrimination for federal contractors
Employers covered by the laws enforced by the EEOC are legally required to post this notice in “a conspicuous location in the workplace where notices to applicants and employees are customarily posted.”
Employers are further encouraged to supplement their physical posting with a digital posting, especially for employers who have employees who work remotely or at other off-site locations. For those employers with no physical location, a digital notice must be electronically posted in an easily accessible location, such as the employer’s website.
Failure to comply with the EEOC’s posting requirement may not only result in financial penalties (currently a maximum of $612, yet adjusted annually) but further compromise an employer’s defenses to an EEOC claim.
The new poster is currently available in English and Spanish, but the EEOC states that it will be available in additional languages at a later date. There is currently no stated announced deadline for replacement. However, employers should swap out their postings as soon as possible.
We encourage you to reach out to your Akerman labor and employment lawyer for any additional information, questions, or concerns.