Aug 30, 2019

Illinois’ New Employment Laws Expand the Definition of Employer While Creating New Requirements for All

New Illinois Employment Laws

Artificial Intelligence Video Interview Act

On August 9, 2019, Illinois’ Governor signed into law the Artificial Intelligence Video Interview Act. This Act allows employers to use artificial intelligence (AI) to assist with the interview and hiring process so long as certain conditions are met, such as the employer gaining the applicant’s consent and explaining to the applicant how the AI will be used. Illinois employers who plan to use AI as an interview aid should ensure the requisite conditions are met before using AI to evaluate interview videos.

Public Act 101-0221

Also enacted recently is Public Act 101-0221, that aims to provide further protections to employees from all forms of harassment. This Public Act creates many laws and also amends current laws. Importantly, the definition of employer was amended to include small businesses with one or more employees, as well as large companies with one or more Illinois workers.

Laws Created. The Workplace Transparency Act creates prohibitions on arbitration clauses and confidentiality clauses in an employee’s contract in regard to any form of harassment. Employers should review their employee contracts to ensure they do not contain such prohibited clauses. The Hotel and Casino Employee Safety Act that applies to employers in the hotel and casino industry, requires employers to provide employees who work alone with “panic buttons” to alert others if emergency assistance is needed. The employers must also update anti-sexual-harassment policies to include procedures for reporting acts against employees by patrons. The Sexual Harassment Victim Representation Act requires unions and employers to ensure that in cases of sexual harassment when both the victim and accused are union members, each shall have separate union representatives in any proceedings.

Laws Amended. The amendments to the Illinois Human Rights Act include requiring employers to provide employees with yearly, mandatory sexual harassment training. Employers in the restaurant and bar industry have additional requirements to be met, including industry specific training. Illinois employers also are now required to report adverse judgments to the Illinois Department of Human Rights. The Victims’ Economic Security and Safety Act was also amended to include victims of gender violence in addition to the already covered victims of domestic and sexual violence.

If you have any questions regarding these laws or their impact, please contact your labor and employment counsel at Smith, Gambrell & Russell, LLP.