California, like many states across the U.S., will be unveiling a range of new laws when the clock strikes midnight on the first of January. Here are a few of the new laws that will be coming into force:
Californians in the Golden State will be free to legally spark up and enjoy recreational cannabis come Jan. 1. Individual cities will still be free to introduce local rules on the usage and sale of the herb, but dispensaries will still have to be at least 600 feet from schools and must close their doors by 10 p.m. While the previous laws allowing for medicinal usage of cannabis were already extremely loose and one didn't necessarily need glaucoma or a debilitating illness to get a prescription allowing them access to the various strains of indica and sativa, waxes and edibles, this will thoroughly free the right to recreationally enjoy cannabis.
Work Site Immigration Enforcement and Protections:
Assembly Bill No. 450 will restrict Immigration and Customs Enforcement from raiding workplaces and employers and their officials won't allow immigration officials to enter non-public areas of the workplace unless the agent has a warrant. Each violation can cost as much as US$10,000 for each violation.
Minimum Wage Increases:
The state's minimum wage will increase to US$10.50 per hour for employers with 25 or fewer workers, US$11 per hour for employers with 26 or more employees.
Employers Banned From Asking Criminal History on Applications:
Assembly Bill No. 1008 will ban state agencies, public utilities with five or more workers and employers from questioning an applicant’s conviction history in applications. Only when an employment offer is made will bosses be able to consider a person’s criminal background. If an employer rescinds the offer they must notify the applicant why, in writing, the offer was taken back. In that case, applicants can challenge the rescission and the employer must then review the challenge.
Assembly Bill No. 168 will bar employers from asking salary information from job applicants. Bosses will also be prohibited from relying on salary history as a factor in determining a new employee's salary.
Under the auspices of Assembly Bill No. 693, ammunition sales and transfers must be made in-person through licensed vendors who have been vetted and improved by California's Department of Justice. Out-of-state purchases and purchases made online are also required to go through a vendor. The state's powerful police officers and law enforcement officials from any city, county, city and county, and state or federal government won't face similar restrictions.
LGBT Rights For Long-Term Care Facility:
Senate Bill No. 219 will give force to existing law that ban facilities from discriminating against individuals on the basis of sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression or HIV status. The denial of admission, transfer, transfer refusal, discharge or eviction of LGBT residents will be prohibited, and facilities will be required to use a resident’s preferred name or pronouns.