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Free harassment prevention training for the US (2024)


February 27, 2024



Harassment prevention training for the US

Building a positive and inclusive work environment that’s free from harassment is crucial for fostering productivity, employee well-being, and overall organizational success. One important tool in achieving this is harassment prevention training. 

By equipping employees with the knowledge, skills, and resources to recognize, prevent, and respond to harassment, organizations can cultivate a culture of respect and safety.

In this article, we'll discuss how to implement effective harassment prevention training, including identifying employees who need it and specifying the relevant courses they need to take.

What is harassment prevention training in the workplace?

Harassment prevention training in the workplace is a type of training initiated to help employees identify, intercept, and respond to different types of harassment. 

Harassment prevention training in the workplace

Unfortunately, instances of workplace harassment like sexual harassment, bullying, and discrimination are still common issues in many US companies. If not handled properly, these different types of harassment can cause serious emotional distress, lower work performance, and even result in costly and stressful lawsuits.

One of the best ways to stop harassment in the workplace is to give employees access to harassment prevention training programs like in-person training sessions or online courses. 

In-person harassment training session or online courses

Through training, employees get to learn about what actually counts as harassment, how to prevent it from happening, how to respond if it does, and how to report incidents in the workplace. Additionally, in some US states, harassment prevention training isn't just recommended—it's actually required by law. 

US employers have a legal obligation to create a safe and healthy work environment for their teams. Otherwise, they could face serious consequences like legal action, financial penalties, and damage to their brand and reputation. 

To help you train your team and meet compliance requirements, we’ve listed down the most recommended harassment prevention training courses for US organizations.

Recommended harassment prevention training courses

SC Training (formerly EdApp) has partnered with American law firm, Polsinelli, to create a collection of harassment prevention courses designed to comply with legal requirements in all 50 states.

Overall, there are 12 comprehensive courses that are divided into three versions: essential, extended, and advanced. These are designed to address the specific compliance training needs of both non-supervisors and supervisors in different US states.

Harassment Prevention Essentials (for employees & supervisors)

SC Training (formerly EdApp)’s USA Harassment Prevention Essentials courses are 45-minute online training programs built specifically for employees and supervisors. They aim to help organizations understand what harassment prevention is and how to create a safe and respectful work environment.

Through these courses, you and your team will be able to define harassment, identify inappropriate workplace behaviors, understand where and when it can happen, and how to report it. You’ll also learn more about retaliation, third-party harassment, types of sexual harassment, and their negative effects on employees. 

Overall, the courses include 11 bite-sized lessons that your team can complete from any device.  They serve as excellent base courses for employees or supervisors in states like New York (State and City), Illinois, Massachusetts, Washington, and Rhode Island, and also for those states with no mandatory training requirements.

SC Training (formerly EdApp) harssment prevention training essentials courses

One of the advantages of these SC Training (formerly EdApp) courses is that they’re enhanced with gamification elements and interactive quizzes to increase knowledge retention and make learning more engaging for the team.

Check out the courses:

Try SC Training (formerly EdApp) at no cost and keep your team's harassment prevention knowledge up to date!

Extended Harassment Prevention Courses (for employees)

SC Training (formerly EdApp)’s collection of extended harassment prevention courses is designed to meet the specific legal requirements for sexual harassment training in the states of California, Chicago, Maine, and Delaware. Each course runs for 1 hour and is specially built for employees (non-supervisors).

SC Training (formerly EdApp) extended harasment prevention training courses

Similar to the essential courses, these extended courses also touch on topics like sexual harassment, types of sexual harassment, proper reporting processes, and the benefits of a harassment-free workplace. But compared to the basic courses, they offer employees more detailed insights.

Check out the courses:

Advanced Harassment Prevention Courses (for employees & supervisors)

SC Training (formerly EdApp)’s advanced harassment prevention courses are more in-depth, each running for two hours and giving teams more detailed and extensive training. They meet the legal requirements for sexual harassment training for supervisors in California, Maine, Delaware, Chicago, and Connecticut, as well as non-supervisors in Connecticut.

SC Training (formerly EdApp) advanced harassment prevention training courses

Unlike the essential and extended courses that only touch on the overview of harassment and sexual harassment and how to handle those situations, these advanced harassment prevention courses have an additional one-hour module about bystander intervention. 

The added module can help employees and supervisors understand the definition of bystander intervention. They’ll also learn about different ways to implement it since the courses have around 5-10 different scenario-based lessons.

Check out the courses:

What are the state requirements for USA harassment prevention training?

To achieve compliance with legal mandates, you can refer to the bulleted lists below. They detail the specific training requirements as per government websites and the suggested courses for each state. To find your state easily, use the “Command F” function and enter your state in the search bar. 


  • Under Senate Bill 1343, companies with five or more employees, including temporary or seasonal workers, are obligated to conduct sexual harassment training for their teams. 
  • All nonsupervisory team members must receive at least one hour of training.
  • Supervisors are required to receive a minimum of two hours worth of training.
  • Training sessions should be conducted once every two years.
  • Training content must include real-life examples of harassment that are related to gender identity, gender expression, and sexual orientation.

Learn more: California harassment training requirements

Suggested courses: SC Training (formerly EdApp)’s California Harassment Prevention Courses (Employees & Supervisors)


  • Employers are required to give existing employees two hours of harassment training.
  • Additionally, for new employees hired on or after April 19, 2021, employers must make sure that they receive two hours of training within six months from their start date. 
  • Lastly, companies must conduct supplemental training, at intervals not exceeding ten years for ongoing compliance.

Learn more: Connecticut harassment training requirements

Suggested courses: SC Training (formerly EdApp)’s Connecticut Harassment Prevention Courses (Employees & Supervisors)


  • Employers having 50 or more employees are obligated to offer interactive training on sexual harassment prevention. 
  • New employees should receive this training within one year of their hire date while existing employees must receive the training within one year of the statute's effective date (January 1, 2019). 
  • The training should cover the illegality of sexual harassment, examples of sexual harassment, legal remediation and complaint process, guidance on how to contact the Delaware Department of Labor, and the legal prohibition against retaliation.
  • New supervisors need to complete extra interactive training within one year of being hired or starting their supervisory role. 
  • For existing supervisors, the training must be done by January 1, 2020.
  • Both employees and supervisors must undergo training every two years to stay up to date.

Learn more: Delaware harassment training requirements

Suggested courses: SC Training (formerly EdApp)’s Delaware Harassment Prevention Courses (Employees & Supervisors)


  • Senate Bill 75, also known as the Workplace Transparency Act, requires all employers in Illinois to conduct sexual harassment training for all employees.
  • Training must be done annually.

Learn more: Illinois harassment training requirements

Suggested courses: SC Training (formerly EdApp)’s USA Harassment Prevention Courses (Employees & Supervisors)


  • Starting July 1, 2022, it’s mandatory for all employees in Chicago to receive one hour of sexual harassment prevention training and one hour of bystander intervention training every year. 
  • Supervisors and managers are required to complete two hours of training on a yearly basis. 

Learn more: Chicago harassment training requirements

Suggested courses: SC Training (formerly EdApp)’s Chicago Harassment Prevention Courses (Employees & Supervisors)


Here, organizations with 15 or more employees must offer sexual harassment training to all their employees. This training should be completed within one year from the start of their employment and should include the following:

  • A written notice of the illegality of sexual harassment 
  • The definition of sexual harassment under state law 
  • Examples of sexual harassment 
  • The internal complaint process available to the employee
  • The legal recourse and complaint process available through the Maine Human Rights Commission 
  • Directions on how to contact the Commission 
  • The protection against retaliation as provided pursuant to Title 5, section 4553, subsection 10, paragraph D

Learn more: Maine harassment training requirements

Suggested courses: SC Training (formerly EdApp)’s Maine Harassment Prevention Courses (Employees & Supervisors)

New York & New York City

In the state of New York, it's mandatory for companies to conduct annual sexual harassment prevention training for their employees. Apart from being interactive, the training should include:

  • An explanation of sexual harassment based on the guidance issued by the Department of Labor in consultation with the Division of Human Rights
  • Examples of behaviors that would be considered unlawful sexual harassment
  • Federal and state laws related to sexual harassment, as well as the available remedies for victims
  • Employee rights to seek redress and the different avenues available for filing complaints
  • Responsibilities of supervisors regarding preventing and addressing sexual harassment

Learn more: New York State harassment training requirements

Suggested courses: SC Training (formerly EdApp)’s USA Harassment Prevention Courses (Employees & Supervisors)

All other states

Including: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming

  • In these states, training isn't mandatory but is highly recommended. 
  • It is up to employers to take the necessary steps to prevent sexual harassment and create a safe and respectful workplace for their teams.

Suggested courses: SC Training (formerly EdApp)’s USA Harassment Prevention Courses (Employees & Supervisors)

Benefits of harassment prevention training

To be a responsible employer, you need to have both policies and training in place. It's not a matter of choosing one or the other, but rather embracing both. 

By taking the lead and offering harassment prevention training, employers show their commitment to creating a work culture that values respect and inclusivity. This can have a major positive impact on employee morale and productivity. Training also offers numerous benefits, helping companies:

1. Create a positive workplace culture

Harassment negatively affects your employees' health and well-being. With proper harassment training, your team members can gain a clear understanding of what constitutes harassment and know that such behavior will not be tolerated at work. This fosters positive professional relationships, reduces stress and burnout, and directly boosts productivity.

2. Identify workplace sexual harassment behaviors

Sexual harassment training effectively raises awareness about acceptable and inappropriate behaviors. It clarifies gray areas and demonstrates how unchecked inappropriate behavior can escalate into harassment or discrimination.

3. Increase employee loyalty

When management makes workplace compliance training such as sexual harassment, bullying, and discrimination training mandatory for all employees, it sends a powerful message. 

It shows that preventing sexual harassment and other inappropriate behaviors is important and will not be tolerated. This makes employees feel valued and cared for, leading to increased loyalty and higher productivity.

4. Reduce legal liabilities

If an employee takes legal action for sexual harassment, your organization will be questioned about whether your employees have received training on anti-harassment laws. 

If it's discovered that no training has been provided, your organization may face significant financial penalties and damage to its reputation, stakeholder value, and employee retention. Remember, taking all reasonable steps includes having policies and providing regular training to your staff.

5. Encourage reporting of incidents

Training plays a vital role in educating and encouraging employees to report incidents or potential problems. It shows them the step-by-step complaint procedure and raises awareness of your organization's policy on sexual harassment and other inappropriate behaviors.

Important topics to cover in workplace harassment training

When it comes to building a safe and respectful workplace, certain topics must be discussed during workplace harassment training. This includes everything from understanding different types of harassment to knowing how to report complaints to Human Resources.

1. Sexual harassment

This type of harassment involves non-consensual advances, unwanted demands for favors, or any other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature. It's a serious issue that can turn a workplace toxic and have serious legal and financial consequences for both the employer and the victim.

That's why it's essential for harassment prevention training programs to cover sexual harassment in-depth. With sexual harassment training courses, employees will be able to understand what exactly constitutes sexual harassment, explore different types of situations that can arise, and most importantly, learn how to prevent and report it.

2. Bystander Intervention

This is a harassment training topic that encourages employees to step up and respond when they see something inappropriate, harmful, or unethical happening in the workplace.

Bystander intervention doesn't just focus on the victim or the person causing trouble. It actually emphasizes the power that witnesses, like you and your employees, have in making a positive difference.

By focusing on prevention and taking direct action, bystander intervention helps create a safer workplace where harmful behaviors are less likely to happen and more likely to be addressed immediately.

3. Protected Characteristics

Protected characteristics are personal traits or qualities that the law safeguards from any kind of discrimination, harassment, or retaliation at work. This includes things like age, race, gender, sexual orientation, religion, and disability.

When it comes to your harassment prevention training programs and policies, it's crucial to include these protected characteristics. This helps in making sure that no one faces discrimination or harassment based on who they are.

Implementing harassment prevention training with SC Training (formerly EdApp)

Leveraging an all-in-one training software and learning management system like SC Training (formerly EdApp) can definitely help companies streamline their harassment prevention training programs. 

This user-friendly platform allows managers and learning and development (L&D) leaders to quickly distribute courses among employees, track individual learner progress, and generate reports. It also makes it easier to manage compliance requirements and helps you guarantee that training remains accessible and up-to-date. 

SC Training (formerly EdApp) reporting and analytics

SC Training (formerly EdApp) also offers fantastic communication tools like group training and practical assessments, which can help teams test their knowledge about harassment prevention.

And the best part? If you’re looking for free, interactive, and US-compliant harassment prevention courses, you’ll find everything you need in SC Training (formerly EdApp)’s easy-to-access course library. It's free for up to 10 users.

SC Training (formerly EdApp) course library

Train your teams with readily available harassment prevention courses. Join SC Training (formerly EdApp) for free today!


Hannah Malmstrom

Hannah is an eLearning writer who dedicates her time to creating in-depth content about SC Training (formerly EdApp), a multi-award-winning mobile LMS that has pioneered one of the most progressive microlearning solutions on the market. She brings years of writing experience in the online software industry to her current role in the eLearning sphere. When she's not writing, you can find her catching up on new anime series or re-reading her favorite novels.

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