Employment Law Legislation Leads to More Questions Than Answers

The House General and Housing Committee took testimony throughout the week on the bill that would remove the standard of severe or pervasive for unlawful harassment or discrimination. The only member of the committee with human resources experience raised concerns about how challenging implementation would be. Rep. Ashley Bartley (R-Franklin-1) asked the committee to consider codifying the standards of severe or pervasive with guidance around those standards like California’s law but ultimately the suggestion was not met with interest from other legislators. S.103 was voted out of committee and is now poised for passage in the House. If the bill becomes law, this will likely incur litigation to determine the guidelines for unlawful harassment and discrimination.  

The Vermont Chamber previously testified in the Senate Economic Development that the legislation would bypass the opportunity for restorative change and instead be lost to litigation.