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New Mandates for Workplace Violence Prevention Plans - SB 553

Published on February 21, 2024

According to the US Department of Labor, approximately two million people throughout the country are victims of non-fatal violence at the workplace each year. Starting January 1, 2025, a new bill will go into effect that hopes to protect employees from workplace violence and mandate employers to substantiate their protocols when a work dispute takes place. 

SB 553 mandates that collective bargaining representatives can now seek restraining orders on behalf of employees who've experienced violence or threats at work. More so, This legislation requires that employers develop a written workplace violence prevention plan, which can be incorporated with  their injury and illness prevention program (IIPP) or can be a standalone plan. This law becomes effective July 1, 2024, unless exempted.

"Starting January 1, 2025, a new bill will take effect to protect employees from workplace violence and require employers to substantiate their protocols during work disputes."

Here are some key takeaways business owners should consider when adhering to SB 553:  

Develop a Workplace Violence Prevention Plan 

CA employers with more than 10 employees must establish a workplace violence protection plan that includes a variety of elements, including effective procedures for reporting and responding to employee concerns about violence and where employees should report incidents of workplace violence and threats.  

Train Employees on How to Report Incidents and How to Respond 

SB 553 mandates that an employee in your organization must be trained and designated to oversee that the rest of the staff receive these new workplace violence prevention training and protocols.   

Identify and Implement a Database or Log To Track Violent Incidents, Threats, and Investigations 

SB 553 requires employers to log in to a database or method of their choosing for each incident. These logs must be available and kept for at least five years. Each entry must include:  

  • the date, time, and location of the incident; 
  • classification of the type of violence as one of four defined categories, based on the identity of the perpetrator; and 
  • “a detailed description of the incident,” including the type of attack (e.g., “attack with a weapon,” “sexual assault,” or “animal attack”). 

Currently, Keenan SafeSchools and Keenan Safe Colleges offer the following workplace prevention related training topics that could be used as part of your overall WVPP training plan, based off of your occupation exposures and employee feedback: 

  • Workplace Violence: Awareness and Prevention 
  • Threat Assessment 
  • Terrorism: Awareness and Response 
  • Active Assailant Preparedness 
  • School Intruders 
  • School Violence: Identifying and Addressing 
  • Visual Weapons Screening 

 Additionally, IMReady offers a variety of workplace violence related training including:  

  • Threat and Physical Security Assessment (TaPS) 
  • Crisis First Responder for Schools (CRF-S) 
  • Comprehensive School Safety Plan Development (CSSP) 
  • Conflict De-Escalation (CD-E) 

At Keenan, we collaborate with several subject matter experts in workplace violence prevention that can help your business develop a prevention plan that adheres to these new California requirements.  

To read more about SB 553 and how IMReady’s wide array of resources can help your business navigate the new legislation, visit and contact a member of your account team.  

Tags: property & casualty

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