© 2013 Meyer Fluegge & Tenney P.S., All rights reserved.   DISCLAIMER

FOLLOW US:

  • w-facebook
Search

New Washington Statute protects victims of domestic violence, assault, and stalking

Updated: Aug 9, 2018


August 2, 2018 by Peter M. Ritchie - Business //


Are you aware of this statute recently enacted by the Legislature—RCW 49.76.001? The statute went into effect June 7, 2018, and prohibits employers from taking any negative action against an actual or perceived victim of domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking. It also requires a reasonable safety accommodation upon request.


Under the language of the statute,

An employer may not:


(1) Refuse to hire an otherwise qualified individual because the individual is an actual or perceived victim of domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking;


(2) Discharge, threaten to discharge, demote, suspend or in any manner discriminate or retaliate against an individual with regard to promotion, compensation, or other terms, conditions, or privileges of employment because the individual is an actual or perceived victim of domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking;


(3) Refuse to make a reasonable safety accommodation requested by an individual who is a victim of domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking, unless the employer can demonstrate that the accommodation would impose an undue hardship on the operation of the business of the employer. For the purposes of this section, an “undue hardship” means an action requiring significant difficulty or expense. A reasonable safety accommodation may include, but is not limited to, a transfer, reassignment, modified schedule, changed work telephone number, changed work email address, changed workstation, installed lock, implemented safety procedure, or any other adjustment to a job structure, workplace facility, or work requirement in response to actual or threatened domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking.


The statute also provides for an award of attorney fees against an employer who violates the terms of the statute.


If you have any concerns about this statute as an employer, or feel it may be an issue, please contact one of our attorneys. We will then set up a time to meet to discuss your circumstances.


August 2, 2018 by Peter M. Ritchie - Business


About The Author


Peter Ritchie is a partner at Meyer, Fluegge & Tenney, P.S.