California workers who sign non-disclosure agreements will soon get to breathe a sigh of relief. Thanks to a new law, people who have suffered workplace discrimination can speak out against it even after entering into such a contract.
What is the new law?
The Silenced No More Act, newly signed into law by California Gov. Gavin Newsom, protects workers who suffered violations like discrimination or harassment. The law allows employees to speak out even though they have signed an NDA. It prohibits companies from using NDAs in severance and settlement agreements to prevent former employees from openly discussing the indignities they endured at work. The law takes effect in 2022 and applies to businesses in all industries.
What are employees’ opinions of the new law?
Previously, state Sen. Connie Leyva unveiled the Stand Together Against Non-Disclosures or STAND Act, which came after the MeToo movement. It was signed into law in 2018 and gave employees the right to speak out against gender discrimination. Although it was a good start, it wasn’t enough as it didn’t include discrimination and harassment based on race.
Silenced No More picks up where the older law left off. The new law gives employees who have faced racial discrimination at work the opportunity to get candid. No longer will they have no choice but to stay silent about what they endured.
A woman who served as a manager for Pinterest expressed her happiness and relief over the new law being signed. She said that she experienced continuous racial discrimination in her previous professional position and was glad that the 40 million people who go through the same thing will finally be able to speak out. Along with another woman, she received a settlement from Pinterest after filing a lawsuit for racial and gender discrimination.