Chicago Expands Anti-Harassment Laws

The city of Chicago recently revised its anti-harassment ordinance, and organizations with employees located in Chicago may need to modify policies and practices to ensure compliance with the new requirements. Beginning July 2022, the city will require employers to provide employees with additional training, a new written policy, and a new posted policy on sexual harassment. Model policy language and training materials will be available on the city’s website before July 2022.

The law expands the definition of “sexual harassment” to explicitly include sexual misconduct, “which means any behavior of a sexual nature which also involves coercion, abuse of authority, or misuse of an individual’s employment position.” The law also lengthens the reporting periods on all discrimination claims and increases penalties for discrimination.

The Illinois Human Rights Act, which applies to employers with one or more Illinois employees, already requires sexual harassment prevention training. While this training is likely sufficient to comply with some of the new training requirements in Chicago, it may not satisfy all the new requirements. Lake Effect will monitor Chicago’s website for further developments and be ready to advise impacted employers when the new materials are available. Please look for an email update from Lake Effect at that time, and then let us know if you want our assistance.

Lake Effect is here to answer your questions about training, policies, and practices to keep your workplace free of harassment and discrimination. We continue to monitor important legal and HR developments, as well as COVID-related updates from federal, state, and local authorities. Please watch our blogs and emails for these important updates, as well as discussions of how compliance meets culture. To dive into these issues, contact us at or 1-844-333-5253.

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