California’s Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA) published a model workplace violence prevention plan and fact sheets for applicable industries to help employers comply with SB 553. As we noted in our 2023 Legislative Update, starting July 1, 2024, SB 553 requires employers to implement and maintain a comprehensive workplace violence prevention plan. Employers can integrate their workplace violence prevention plan into their existing injury and illness program or create a new, separate document that details a workplace violence prevention plan. SB 553 also mandates new training and recordkeeping related to preventing workplace violence. The legislation exempts healthcare facilities, teleworkers, and some small employers with fewer than 10 employees from the requirement of having a workplace violence prevention plan.

Cal/OSHA, charged with enforcing this new law, developed a model plan and fact sheet to help employers follow the new requirements. These resources, which are adaptable to various work settings, aim to make it easier for businesses to establish comprehensive workplace violence prevention measures by the July 1, 2024, compliance deadline.

The general fact sheet from Cal/OSHA offers a useful summary of SB 553, detailing the requirements for a workplace violence prevention plan, violent incident logs, and necessary training. It also explains the requirements for newly mandated workplace violence recordkeeping and reporting. Cal/OSHA also provided an industry-specific fact sheet for employers in the agricultural industry.

While Cal/OSHA does not require employers to use its model workplace violence prevention plan, this plan serves as a valuable starting point. It includes instructions for using the model plan, suggested definitions, and prompts for tailoring the plan to the specific needs of an employer's worksite.

Employers should start now to develop the required violence prevention plan before the July 1, 2024, deadline. If employers need help developing a plan for their worksite, they should consult with experienced labor and employment counsel to ensure compliance with these requirements.

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