Combating Sexual Harassment in the Workplace

New York State needs to continue to build on the achievements we made in recent years and empower workers who have experienced harassment and discrimination. If we are serious about the condemnation we express when abusers fall from grace, we have to be willing to do the hard work in the in-between times to dismantle the institutions, cultures, and legal structures that foster and perpetuate harassment and discrimination. We have to do more than express outrage at bad behavior. We have to redefine survivor ally-ship by changing the laws that protect harassers and leave workers vulnerable.

 

Here’s how:

Protect Economic Mobility by Banning “No Re-hire” Clauses

Too often when settling harassment or discrimination cases, employers will force victims to agree to never apply for a job anywhere with that company ever again. By including this clause within settlements, employers are forcing an undue burden on employees who have experienced harassment. Especially when they apply to large multinational corporations or companies following mergers and acquisitions, these clauses can have the effect of banning employees who have been harassed from entire industries. Those who choose to come forward about their experiences of harassment or discrimination in the workplace should not have to fear retribution and intimidation. Passing my legislation to ban these clauses from being enforced in New York will help protect workers.

 

 

End the “Personal Staff Loophole” that Allows Government Officials to Sexually Harass

Sexual harassment has been a fact of life in the halls of power in New York State for far too long. An exception to sexual harassment laws for elected officials' employees runs completely counter to efforts to root out, combat and deter harassment in government. We need to close the loophole and protect all workers across our state. 

 

Increasing the Statute of Limitations for Harassment & Discrimination 

Currently, if you experience sexual harassment or discrimination in the workplace, you only have three years to file a civil suit against your employer. Processing trauma and find the ability to come forward should not have a time limit on it, which is why I want to double the time frame to six years to provide adequate time to come forward.