On November 2, 2023, the New York City Council passed a bill[1] requiring the New York City Department of Consumer and Worker Protection (“DCWP”), in coordination with the Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs (“MOIA”), the New York City Commission on Human Rights (“NYCCHR”), and community and labor organizations, to create and publish a workers’ bill of rights.

After months of anticipation, the Workers’ Bill of Rights went live on the DCWP website in March 2024, and provides a comprehensive summary of the rights of employees, applicants, and independent contractors in New York City. It also offers information about New York City and State laws, as well as relevant federal laws.

The law also contains a requirement that employers provide information to employees about the Workers’ Bill of Rights. To aid employers in doing so, in April 2024 the DCWP released the “Know Your Rights” poster. This multilingual poster provides a QR code directing workers to the DCWP’s webpage for the Workers’ Bill of Rights.

To comply with the requirements of the law, beginning July 1, 2024, employers must:

  • Provide the poster to every current employee;
  • Provide the poster to new employees before they begin work; and
  • “Conspicuously post” the poster in the workplace. 

In addition to the traditional posting of hard copy posters, for employers with internal websites, apps, or other digital means of communicating regularly with employees, the poster must be posted to or distributed through those means as well.

The law penalizes employers for violations of the posting and notice requirement. For each violation, employers will face a $500 civil penalty. For first time violations, employers will be given 30 days to cure the violation without facing a penalty. 

Companies with operations in New York City should prepare to post and provide the poster to employees in advance of the July 1, 2024, compliance date. Employers with questions concerning this law or other poster requirements should consult with experienced employment counsel.

FOOTNOTES

[1] The bill became law on December 4, 2023, when Mayor Eric Adams returned it to the City Council unsigned, and was subsequently codified as Local Law No. 161 of 2023.