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AB-1084 Gender neutral retail departments.(2021-2022)

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Date Published: 02/18/2021 09:00 PM
AB1084:v99#DOCUMENT


CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2021–2022 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill
No. 1084


Introduced by Assembly Members Low and Cristina Garcia

February 18, 2021


An act to add Part 2.57 (commencing with Section 55.7) to Division 1 of the Civil Code, relating to civil rights.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 1084, as introduced, Low. Gender neutral retail departments.
Existing law, the Unruh Civil Rights Act, specifies that all persons within the jurisdiction of the state are free and equal, and no matter their sex, race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, disability, medical condition, genetic information, marital status, sexual orientation, citizenship, primary language, or immigration status, are entitled to the full and equal accommodations, advantages, facilities, privileges, or services in all business establishments of every kind.
This bill would require a retail department store with 500 or more employees that sells childcare items, children’s clothing, or toys, to maintain undivided areas of its sales floor where the majority of those items being offered are displayed, regardless of whether an item has traditionally been marketed for either girls or for boys. The bill would prohibit the use of signage within each undivided area indicating that particular items are for either girls or for boys. If a retail department store places a childcare item, an article of children’s clothing, a toy, or anything that could be considered a combination thereof, in an area of its sales floor outside of the undivided areas where the majority of like items are sold, the bill would prohibit the use of any signage with respect to the item that indicates that it is either for girls or for boys.
This bill would also require a retail department store located in California that maintains an internet website through which it sells childcare items, children’s clothing, or toys, to dedicate a section of the internet website to the sale of those items and articles that is titled, at the discretion of the retailer, “kids”, “unisex”, or “gender neutral”, as specified.
Beginning on January 1, 2024, the bill would make a retail department store that fails to correct a violation of these provisions within 30 days of receiving written notice of the violation from the Attorney General liable for a civil penalty of $1,000, as provided.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Part 2.57 (commencing with Section 55.7) is added to Division 1 of the Civil Code, to read:

PART 2.57. Gender Neutral Retail Departments

55.7.
 The Legislature finds and declares both of the following:
(a) Unjustified differences in similar products that are traditionally marketed either for girls or for boys can be more easily identified by the consumer if similar items are displayed closer to one another in one, undivided area of the retail sales floor.
(b) Keeping similar items that are traditionally marketed either for girls or for boys separated makes it more difficult for the consumer to compare the products and incorrectly implies that their use by one gender is inappropriate.

55.8.
 (a) A retail department store that offers childcare items for sale shall maintain one undivided area of its sales floor where the majority of the childcare items being offered shall be displayed, regardless of whether a particular childcare item has been traditionally marketed for either girls or for boys.
(b) A retail department store that offers children’s clothing for sale shall maintain one undivided area of its sales floor where the majority of the children’s clothing being offered shall be displayed, regardless of whether a particular article of children’s clothing has been traditionally marketed for either girls or for boys.
(c) A retail department store that offers toys for sale shall maintain one undivided area of its sales floor where the majority of the toys being offered shall be displayed, regardless of whether a particular toy has been traditionally marketed for either girls or for boys.
(d) Nothing in this section shall be construed to constrain how a retailer promotes, displays, or presents a particular item within each undivided area of its sales floor where either childcare items, children’s clothing, or toys are being offered for sale. However, no signage shall be used within any undivided area where either childcare items, children’s clothing, or toys are offered for sale indicating the items are for either girls or for boys.
(e) A retail department store that displays for sale a childcare item, an article of children’s clothing, a toy, or anything that could be considered a combination thereof, in an area of its sales floor outside of the undivided areas where the majority of childcare items, children’s clothing, or toys are displayed for sale, as described in subdivisions (a), (b), and (c), shall not use any signage with respect to the item, article, or toy that indicates that it is either for girls or for boys.
(f) A retail department store located in California that maintains an internet website through which it sells childcare items, children’s clothing, toys, or anything that could be considered a combination thereof, shall dedicate a section of the internet website to the sale of those items and articles that shall be titled, at the discretion of the retailer, “kids”, “unisex”, or “gender neutral”. The items and articles included in that section of the internet website shall be determined at the discretion of the retailer.
(g) This section shall apply only to retail department stores with 500 or more employees.
(h) Beginning on January 1, 2024, a retail department store that fails to correct a violation of this section within 30 days of receiving written notice of the violation from the Attorney General is liable for a civil penalty of one thousand dollars ($1,000) which may be assessed and recovered in a civil action brought in the name of the people of the State of California by the Attorney General in any court of competent jurisdiction.
(i) For purposes of this section:
(1) “Childcare item” means any product designed or intended by the manufacturer to facilitate sleep, relaxation, or the feeding of children, or to help children with sucking or teething.
(2) “Clothing” means any wearing apparel, worn for any purpose, including under and outer garments, shoes, and accessories composed primarily of woven material, natural or synthetic yarn, fiber, or leather or similar fabric.
(3) “Toy” means a product designed or intended by the manufacturer to be used by children when they play.