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(a) Each state agency shall provide to employees of the agency an employment discrimination training program that complies with this section.

(b) The training program must provide the employee with information regarding the agency's policies and procedures relating to employment discrimination, including employment discrimination involving sexual harassment.

(c) Each employee of a state agency shall attend the training program required by this section not later than the 30th day after the date the employee is hired by the agency and shall attend supplemental training every two years.

(d) The commission shall develop materials for use by state agencies in providing employment discrimination training as required by this section.

(e) Each state agency shall require an employee of the agency who attends a training program required by this section to sign a statement verifying the employee's attendance at the training program. The agency shall file the statement in the employee's personnel file.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 872, § 14, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.

(a) In any civil action in which the validity of a provision of this chapter or Chapter 461, Government Code, a rule adopted under this chapter or Chapter 461, Government Code, or the application of the provision or rule is challenged as void, unconstitutional, or unenforceable, the commission shall be made a party to the proceedings, and, on the motion of the commission, venue of the cause may be transferred to the district courts of Travis County.

(b) An order restraining the commission or invalidating a provision of this chapter or Chapter 461, Government Code, or a commission rule adopted under this chapter or Chapter 461, Government Code, may not be enforced and may not take effect until the commission has answered and appeared in the action and has exhausted all avenues of appeal and any judgment is final and enforceable.

(c) Notwithstanding any other provision of state law, including this chapter, only the commission, if a prevailing party, may recover costs and attorney's fees in such a declaratory proceeding under this section.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 76, § 9.08(a), eff. Sept. 1, 1995.

(a) If any clause, sentence, subsection, section, or other provision of this chapter or the application of such a provision to any person or circumstances is held invalid or unconstitutional, that invalidity shall not affect the other clauses, sentences, subsections, sections, or provisions or applications of this chapter that may be given effect without the invalid clause, sentence, subsection, section, or provision or application and shall not affect, invalidate, impair, or nullify the remainder of this chapter. The effect of the determination of invalidity shall be confined to the clause, sentence, subsection, section, or provision or application so adjudicated to be invalid or unconstitutional, and to that end the provisions of this chapter are declared to be severable.

(b) If any limit on damages prescribed by Section 21.2585 is invalidated by a method other than by legislative means, the amount of civil liability for all past and future noneconomic losses, including past and future pain and suffering, mental anguish and suffering, and any other nonpecuniary damage, is limited to an amount not to exceed $150,000.

(c) If a limit on damages prescribed by Section 21.2585 is invalidated by a method other than by legislative means and if the alternative civil liability limits contained in Subsection (b) are also invalidated by a method other than by legislative means, Section 21.2585 is void.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 76, § 9.08(a), eff. Sept. 1, 1995.

An oral or written statement made to a commissioner or an employee of the commission in connection with the discharge of the commissioner's or employee's duties under this chapter may not be the basis for an action for defamation of character.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 76, § 9.08(a), eff. Sept. 1, 1995.

If a provision of this chapter is held by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to disqualify the commission as a deferral agency or for the receipt of federal funds, the commission shall administer this chapter to qualify for deferral status or the receipt of those funds until the legislature meets in its next session and has an opportunity to amend this chapter.

Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 269, § 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1993.

(a) This chapter does not relieve a government agency or official of the responsibility to ensure nondiscrimination in employment as required under another provision of the state or federal constitutions or laws.

(b) This chapter does not affect the standards for determining eligibility for benefits under Title 51 or under a state or federal disability benefit program.

(c) Nothing in this chapter may be construed as the basis for a claim by an individual without a disability that the individual was subject to discrimination because of the individual's lack of a disability.

Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 269, § 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1993. Amended by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., ch. 337, § 3, eff. Sept. 1, 2009.

(a) A person commits an offense if the person wilfully resists, prevents, impedes, or interferes with the performance of a duty under or the exercise of a power provided by this chapter.

(b) An offense under this section is a Class B misdemeanor.

Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 269, § 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1993.

(a) The commission by rule shall biennially determine:

(1) the percentage of the statewide civilian workforce composed of:

(A) Caucasian Americans;

(B) African Americans;

(C) Hispanic Americans;

(D) females; and

(E) males; and

(2) the percentage of the statewide civilian workforce of the groups listed in Subdivision (1) according to the following job categories:

(A) state agency administration;

(B) professional;

(C) technical;

(D) protective services;

(E) paraprofessional;

(F) administrative support;

(G) skilled craft; and

(H) service and maintenance.

(b) The commission shall report the percentages of the statewide civilian workforce as determined under this section to the governor and the legislature not later than the fifth day of each regular session of the legislature.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 872, § 12, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.

(a) The commission may:

(1) promote the creation of local commissions on human rights by cooperating or contracting with individuals or state, local, or other agencies, public or private, including agencies of the federal government and of other states;

(2) receive, investigate, seek to conciliate, and pass on complaints alleging violations of this chapter;

(3) file civil actions to effectuate the purposes of this chapter;

(4) request and, if necessary, compel by subpoena:

(A) the attendance of necessary witnesses for examination under oath; and

(B) the production, for inspection and copying, of records, documents, and other evidence relevant to the investigation of alleged violations of this chapter;

(5) furnish technical assistance requested by a person subject to this chapter to further compliance with this chapter or with a rule or order issued under this chapter;

(6) recommend in its annual report legislation or other action to carry out the purposes and policies of this chapter;

(7) adopt procedural rules to carry out the purposes and policies of this chapter; and

(8) provide educational and outreach activities to individuals who have historically been victims of employment discrimination.

(b) The commission by rule may authorize a commissioner or one of its staff to exercise the powers stated in Subsection (a)(4) on behalf of the commission.

(c) The commission biennially shall develop an inventory of equal employment opportunity policies and programs adopted and implemented by the various state agencies.

(d) The commission at least annually shall make a comprehensive written report on the commission's activities to the governor and to the legislature.

(e) The commission shall conduct a study of the policies and programs of a selected state agency if the commission is directed to conduct the study by legislative resolution or by executive order of the governor.

Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 269, § 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1993. Amended by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 76, § 9.03(a), eff. Sept. 1, 1995; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 872, § 11, eff. Sept. 1, 1999; Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., ch. 1312 (S.B. 59), § 77, eff. Sept. 1, 2013.

(a) In this section, “franchisee” and “franchisor” have the meanings assigned by 16 C.F.R. Section 436.1.

(b) For purposes of this chapter, a franchisor is not considered to be an employer of:

(1) a franchisee; or

(2) a franchisee's employees.

(c) With respect to a specific claim for relief under this chapter made by a franchisee or a franchisee's employee, this section does not apply to a franchisor who has been found by a court of competent jurisdiction in this state to have exercised a type or degree of control over the franchisee or the franchisee's employees not customarily exercised by a franchisor for the purpose of protecting the franchisor's trademarks and brand.

Added by Acts 2015, 84th Leg., ch. 1156 (S.B. 652), § 1, eff. Sept. 1, 2015.

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