Volunteers are Now Protected Under FEHA

New this year, volunteers and unpaid interns are now protected under the Fair Employment and Housing Act ("FEHA") against unlawful discrimination and harassment. Assembly Bill 1443, signed by Governor Jerry Brown in September 2014, added to the list of protected people those who work at companies and organizations without pay. Likely a result of the number of people taking unpaid work in a competitive job market where neither federal nor California state law protected unpaid workers, the 2015 amendments to FEHA close that loophole. The new laws apply to volunteers, unpaid interns, or employees performing limited unpaid work.