Mandatory Poster and Education Requirements for California Barbering and Cosmetology Licensees July 1

Any establishment licensed by the Board of Barbering and Cosmetology (BBC), such as hair salons, nail salons and estheticians, must post a required notice by July 1.
Any establishment licensed by the Board of Barbering and Cosmetology (BBC), such as hair salons, nail salons and estheticians, must post a required notice by July 1.

To address workplace violations at California salons, California enacted two pieces of legislation that would provide salon workers, such as nail salon workers, with information on their employment rights. One legislative bill requires a mandatory poster; the other requires educational information for all licensees.

Both bills are intended to educate business owners and workers about existing labor laws that they may be unaware of and violating.

Analyses of the bills discuss how language and cultural barriers have led to confusion about workplace law in many of these establishments. For instance, an estimated 80 percent of nail salon owners and employees throughout the state are Vietnamese immigrant women who often have limited English proficiency, according to one analysis.

Poster Requirement

New legislation for 2017 requires any establishment that is licensed by the Board of Barbering and Cosmetology (BBC) (e.g., hair salons, nail salons, estheticians, etc.) to post a notice regarding workplace rights and wage-and-hour laws (AB 2437).

This notice must be posted beginning July 1, 2017, and must be posted in four languages: English, Spanish, Korean and Vietnamese. The notice must be posted in a conspicuous location in clear view of employees where other similar notices are usually posted. The BBC will inspect for compliance with the posting requirement and failure to post the notice will result in a fine.

The Labor Commissioner has created the barbering and cosmetology poster in all four languages. The poster is three pages long and can be found on the Labor Commissioner’s publications website.

The poster lets workers know that all workers are protected by California’s labor laws, regardless of where the worker was born or whether they have papers to work. Workers can bring claims to the Labor Commissioner regardless of immigration status.

The poster provides information on:

  • Misclassification of a worker as an independent contractor instead of as an employee.
  • Minimum wage, overtime, and meal and rest break requirements.
  • Tip and gratuity distributions.
  • Reimbursement for business expenses.
  • Protection against retaliation.
  • How to report violations of the law.

Education Requirements

Another new law requires the BBC to provide every licensure applicant with basic labor law education as part of the health and safety curriculum provided at BBC schools (AB 2025).

Basic labor law education, includes, but is not limited to, information on the:

  • Key differences between the legal rights, benefits and obligations of an employee and an independent contractor.
  • Wage-and-hour rights for hourly employees.
  • Laws prohibiting language discrimination.
  • Anti-retaliation laws protecting a worker’s right to file complaints with California Department of Industrial Relations.
  • How to obtain more information about state and federal labor laws.

The information must be made available in English, Spanish, Korean and Vietnamese.

Furthermore, all applicants for an establishment license (or license renewal) must also sign an acknowledgment that they understand that establishments are responsible for compliance with California labor laws and understand the basic labor law information they have been provided. This provision is effective on July 1, 2017.

More information on licensing requirements can be found on the BBC website.

Gail Cecchettini Whaley, CalChamber Employment Law Counsel/Content

CalChamber members can read more about Wage and Hour Requirements for Specific Industries, including the garment industry, barbering and cosmetology and janitorial workers, in the HR Library. Not a member? See how CalChamber can help you.

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