From 1ST January 2019, the law n° 2018-771 of September5TH,2018 sets forth new obligations for French companies in the fight against sexual harassment (harcèlement sexuel) and sexists behaviours (agissements sexistes) : posting in the company of the text on sexual harassment and Contentious means of action, designation of a "sexual harassment and sexist practices" referent in companies employing at least 250 employees, designation of a "sexual harassment and sexist practices" referent within all workers councils (CSE).
The law of September 5TH, 2018 aims to make companies and employees aware of the fight against sexual harassment and sexist behaviour.
1) Display in the company of the text on sexual harassment and litigation means
From January 1ST, 2019, employers will have to inform, by any means, employees, trainees and interns, as well as candidates for recruitment, training or work placement, of the text of the Article 222-33 of the French Penal Code (text defining sexual harassment) as well as civil and criminal contentious actions open in matters of sexual harassment and the contact details of the competent authorities and services. The list of these services will be defined by a decree.
In practice, this information will be done through a display that recalls the definition of sexual harassment (harcèlement sexuel) as well as civil or criminal actions that are open in cases of sexual harassment.
This obligation applies in the workplace as well as in the premises or at the door of the premises where the hiring takes place (article L. 1153-5 paragraph 2 of French Labour Code, article 105 Law sept. 5th, 2018).
In companies with 20 or more employees, the internal regulations must already recall "the provisions relating to moral and sexual harassment and sexist behaviour provided for by the Labour Code". (Article L. 1321-2 of the French Labour Code)
2) Designation of CSE referents in companies employing at least 250 employees
2.1) CSE (social and economic council): a referent to fight sexual harassment and sexist behaviour
As from January 1st 2019, the CSE must designate, from among its members, a referent to fight sexual harassment and sexist acts, in the form of a resolution adopted, for a period ending with that of the mandate of the employee delegate (see Article L. 2314-1, paragraph 4).
This referent will benefit from training in health, safety and working conditions (L. 2315-18 of French Labour Code).
The training is paid by the employer under the conditions defined by a decree to intervene.
2.2) A "sexual harassment and sexist behaviour" referent in companies employing at least 250 employees
From January 1ST, 2019, in every company employing at least 250 employees, a referent is appointed to guide, inform and help employees to fight sexual harassment and sexist behaviour. (Article L. 1153-5-1 new)
The text does not specify the mode of designation of the "sexual harassment and sexist acts" referent.
3) Sexual Harassment on the Agenda of the Branch Negotiation
Professional organizations will now have to negotiate at branch level on " provision of tools to companies to prevent and act against sexual harassment and sexist behaviour" (Article L 2241-1, 2 ° of the Labour Code).
This negotiation must take place at least every 4 years.
Frédéric CHHUM, Avocats à la Cour (Paris et Nantes)
.Paris : 4 rue Bayard 75008 Paris - Tel: 01 42 56 03 00 ou 01 42 89 24 48
.Nantes : 41, Quai de la Fosse 44000 Nantes - Tel: 02 28 44 26 44
E-mail : firstname.lastname@example.org