NEW YORK GOVERNOR ANDREW CUOMO SIGNS BILL TO PROTECT UNPAID INTERNS

On July 22, 2014, Governor Cuomo signed into law a new bill that would afford anti-discrimination protection to unpaid interns with respect to hiring, discharge and other terms and conditions of employment.  This law further protects unpaid interns from sexual harassment by their employers and unlawful retaliation for opposing practices forbidden under the New York Human Rights Law (“NYHRL”) or filing a complaint, testifying or assisting in a proceeding brought under the NYHRL.  The new law also makes it unlawful to compel an intern who is pregnant to take a leave of absence.  This bill amends the NYHRL by adding a new section, 296-c, entitled, “Unlawful discriminatory practices relating to interns” and is effectively immediately.

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