California SB 553 Workplace Violence Prevention Law: All States Listen Up!

California SB 553 Workplace Violence Prevention Law: All States Listen Up!

California employers are not the only ones who should be focusing on the new California SB 553 Bill that has turned into the Workplace Violence Prevention Law!

According to the new law, California employers must have a workplace violence prevention plan in place effective July 1, 2024. A step in the right direction, as statistics show.

You may have seen this as “CA SB-553” (the bill) or “CA Labor Code 6401.9” (the law CalOSHA will reference to enforce) or “CA WVPP” (California Workplace Violence Prevention Plan.) No matter how you're learning about it, it matters... and to more than just California.

Coincidentally, April is Workplace Violence Prevention Awareness Month, but shouldn’t every month be? And shouldn’t all employers provide workplace violence prevention training? There’s a high likelihood you’re nodding your head, YES!

Luckily, you’re talking to the right folks! We’re HSI, a single-source partner for EHS, Compliance, and L&D solutions to help you build a safer and smarter workplace. We provide integrated eLearning content, training solutions, and cloud-based EHS software through an easy-to-use online solution for you to train and support your employees anywhere and on any device.

Ok, back to our topic at hand.

What Exactly is Workplace Violence?

According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), workplace violence is defined as an act or threat of violence, ranging from verbal abuse to physical assaults or any other disruptive behavior, including domestic violence and stalking, when it impacts a workplace.

Examples of workplace violence include employees facing shoplifters, someone coming into work areas with a dangerous weapon, and employees making a threat or an act of violence to one another.

Workplace violence does not include lawful acts of self defense or defense of others.

What Is this New Law for California Employers?

The California SB 553 bill, turned into law, sets a precedent for ensuring workplace safety across various industries. Nearly all California employers must develop, implement, and maintain a detailed Workplace Violence Prevention Plan.

This workplace violence plan must include:

Several things to ponder (seriously consider!) regarding the plan:

To learn more, please watch our free training video. This training provides an overview of the new requirements to help your organization establish internal policies and effective procedures.

What Employee Training is Required?

The law requires that California employers train employees after establishing a workplace violence plan. The plan must encompass annual training, violent incident logging, and specific procedures for mitigating workplace violence hazards.

Employee training must cover the following:

Besides the initial and annual training, additional training is required when new workplace violence hazards are identified or the plan changes. Further, California employers, by this new law, must retain training records for at least one year. As you can see, this training needs to be specific to your company’s risks and plans.

Questions About the Violent Incident Log Requirement?

California SB 553 requires keeping a violent incident log. Employers must maintain a log of all incidents of workplace violence, even if the incident did not result in injury. This log must include information on every workplace violence incident based on employee statements, witness statements, and investigation findings. (And, btw... HSI can help you meet this incident log requirement to comply with SB 553!)

Why Should ALL States Listen Up?

Workplace safety is a must. Employees should feel safe and secure in their place of employment. A workplace violence prevention plan should not just be nice to have. Employees put their trust in you. They provide their expertise to your organization and affect your business’ success. A violence prevention plan to protect their safety should be a given. We’re talking about your own safety and security, too, you know!

We at HSI recommend employers in ALL states commit to ongoing employee training as part of your company’s overall violence prevention plan. Organizations nationwide should commit to workplace safety and the well-being of their employees.

So, besides just being a good human, why should other states follow California’s lead? California tends to lead the way in making a new law because of its large and diverse population, with a lot of cultural sway, so when they pass laws, other states often think, "Hey, that’s a good idea!" and follow suit. Workplace safety training is a good idea, wouldn’t you say? So, let’s get started putting a comprehensive workplace violence prevention plan in place in a timely manner!

HSI Can Help!

Effective training programs encourage a proactive approach to safety at all levels of your organization. Start with an effective workplace violence prevention plan.

Calling ALL Californian employers! The July 1, 2024, compliance deadline for a prevention plan to be in place is quickly approaching. California employers must act swiftly to integrate ongoing violence prevention training programs, such as those HSI offers, into their prevention program. As mentioned earlier, we provide solutions to the new requirements, like the violent incident log. We’re your partner and will see your organization is kept up to speed as the new law evolves.

Did You Know...

To learn more about how HSI can recommend employee training and workplace violence incident documentation software that aligns with California’s new law requirements as part of your company’s overall comprehensive workplace violence prevention plan, please contact us.

Calling employers in ALL states including California! The following programs help to prevent violence by teaching employees violence awareness and initial conflict resolution. HSI offers more than 15 video-based, micro-learning courses, all just 4-10 minutes long.

Did You Know...

Start Empowering a Collaborative Workplace Safety Culture

A comprehensive workplace violence prevention plan should be a best practice. It’s also simply smart business. Effective training provides strategies and skills to identify and mitigate potential workplace violence issues – before they happen. In the era of workplace violence escalating, it’s critical to take workplace violence training a step further. Effective response training should also be included in your training program.

If you would like to initiate a comprehensive workplace violence prevention plan for your company or are interested in violence prevention training, active shooter training, and more, let’s talk.

Additional Resources

Laws are always evolving and changing. Our experts are here to help! In the meantime, check out some great resources:

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