The New York State Department of Labor (NYSDOL) has issued its April 2023 newsletter, a copy of which can be read below.
We've Got You Covered: Your Feedback Can Help Shape Labor Policies and Programs
The DOL offers a wide variety of programs and services to help businesses across industries. All our services are available at no cost to you. Each month, we’ll highlight what we offer and how we can help your business grow or get through tough times. If something catches your eye, reach out to us and we can create customized solutions to help you meet your goals, no matter what you’re facing.
Our business survey is back!
Over the last two years, we’ve teamed up with The Business Council and Empire State Development to survey thousands of businesses on their challenges and needs in a world deeply changed by COVID-19 and the new world of work. The results continue to shape workforce development practices, policy, and programs across New York State.
We’re once again partnering with these organizations to gather real-time feedback on the state of the workforce and your current needs. Please take a few minutes to take this year’s survey and let us know where you're struggling to find workers, the skills your business is looking for, and more!
The survey will close at noon on Friday, April 28.
The DOL recently unveiled updates to a critical resource utilized by thousands of businesses statewide. Our Sexual Harassment Model Policy template helps businesses comply with state laws and access contemporary policies on sexual harassment to protect employees in the workplace. The Department collaborated with the New York State Division of Human Rights on the recently strengthened guidance, which addresses remote workers, gender discrimination, retaliation, and other new guidance for workers in New York State.
The DOL also released a new interactive training video and online resources to help employers and employees statewide understand and comply with the newly enhanced policy and mandatory training requirements. For businesses using this video to meet the training requirements, you must also: ask questions of employees as part of the program; accommodate questions asked by employees, with answers provided in a timely manner; or require feedback from employees about the training and the materials presented. We are providing a fillable training assessment form to help meet this requirement.
If you or someone you know is experiencing sexual harassment in the workplace, file a report online or call NYSDHR's new toll-free sexual harassment hotline at 1-800-HARASS-3 Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The DOL is seeking input from New Yorkers to inform a new transgender employment study. In August, Governor Kathy Hochul signed legislation directing DOL to conduct a study on the employment rate of transgender New Yorkers. This study will explore disparities in employment experiences between transgender and gender non-conforming (TGNC) individuals and other New York State residents.
Nationwide studies have found that transgender persons face higher rates of unemployment, workplace discrimination, harassment, and violations. DOL wants to first and foremost center this study around TGNC experiences, which is the main goal of soliciting public comments.
The public comment portal will be available through June 30.
A new Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) Act Portal is now available for businesses to use to file notice of layoffs. This online tool uses the latest technology to provide a more streamlined and improved user experience. It also gives us the ability to assist laid off employees faster, connecting them to support services and resources including new employment and training opportunities.
See our video tutorial of the new portal.
The enhanced WARN Act Portal allows businesses to submit documentation, provide lists of impacted workers, and send other important information directly to the DOL in real time. Once a WARN Act notice is submitted, NYSDOL works with local workforce development boards, community stakeholders, and businesses to rapidly connect impacted workers to new careers and job opportunities.
Under the WARN Act, private sector employers with 50 or more full time employees are required to issue a WARN Act notice 90 days before closings, mass layoffs, and other events.
For more information about the WARN Act, see our WARN for Businesses page.
The gender wage gap and child labor laws were topics of discussion during a recent appearance by DOL Commissioner Roberta Reardon on the AFL-CIO Union Strong Podcast. Listen in as Commissioner Reardon details the findings of the DOL’s recent gender wage gap report as well as what we’re doing to address a 68% increase in child labor violations.
In the spirit of Earth Month, the DOL is highlighting a few sustainable, cost-saving opportunities available to New York Businesses through NYSERDA.
Their On-site Energy Manager (OsEM) program can help create efficient processes that decrease cost and waste, lower operational costs, reduce maintenance time, and create comfortable, safe work areas. The program offers a 75 percent cost-share for industrial and commercial facilities or buildings to hire a dedicated full-time or part time on-site energy manager.
Energy efficiency or clean energy businesses can capitalize on NYSERDA’s On-the-Job Training Program that reduces the financial risk of hiring and training new employees. The program provides reimbursement up to 75% of a new hire’s wages for their first four to six months of employment. New York State businesses that provide services in industries such as high efficiency HVAC, solar photovoltaics, electric vehicle charging stations, building controls, insulation, and other clean energy technologies are eligible to participate.