Employers will be required to provide their employees with a "Workers' Bill of Rights" by July 1, 2024. The New York City Council passed a bill on November 2, 2023, amending the New York City Administrative Code to mandate the creation of a Workers' Bill of Rights. On December 4, 2023, the mayor returned the bill unsigned, resulting in the bill becoming law.

Workers' Bill of Rights

By March 1, 2024, the commissioner of the 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, and community and labor organizations selected by the commissioner of the DCWP, will publish a Workers' Bill of Rights on New York City's website in English, designated citywide languages, and certain temporary languages.

The Workers' Bill of Rights will be a comprehensive document detailing the rights under relevant federal, state, and local law that apply to employees, prospective employees, or independent contractors in New York City. Notably, it will specify which rights apply to workers regardless of their immigration status and will include information about the right to unionize.

Employer Obligations

Employers will be required to:

  1. Provide the Workers' Bill of Rights to current employees by July 1, 2024, and to new hires on or before their first day of work; and
  2. Conspicuously post the Workers' Bill of Rights at the employer's place of business and make it available online or on its mobile application if such means are regularly used to communicate with employees. The information must be in English and any language spoken as a primary language by at least 5 percent of employees.

Penalties for Noncompliance

Employers who fail to comply with these provisions may be liable for a civil penalty of $500. However, for a first violation, the commissioner will notify the business of the violation and request corrective action within 30 days.

Outreach Efforts

In addition to these requirements, the bill mandates outreach efforts by the MOIA, in coordination with the DCWP and community and labor organizations selected by the DCWP, to raise awareness about the Workers' Bill of Rights among employees, prospective employees, and independent contractors in New York City.

These efforts will include:

  1. Contact information for New York City's immigration legal hotline and the asylum application help center;
  2. Resources and contact information for immigration legal services and the MOIA;
  3. Information on what to expect if immigration enforcement authorities come to a workplace; and
  4. Information regarding federal eligibility requirements of temporary protected status.

Next Steps

Employers are advised to familiarize themselves with the new law and its requirements and to prepare for distribution of the Workers' Bill of Rightsby July 1, 2024.

This advisory is a publication of Davis Wright Tremaine LLP. Our purpose in publishing this advisory is to inform our clients and friends of recent legal developments. It is not intended, nor should it be used, as a substitute for specific legal advice as legal counsel may only be given in response to inquiries regarding particular situations.