Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) cosponsored bipartisan legislation led by Senators Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) and Ted Cruz (R-Texas) to overhaul the processes for victims of harassment and discrimination in Congress. Resolutions were recently passed in both the House and the Senate to mandate harassment training, but more reforms are necessary in order to combat sexual harassment and ensure victims are treated fairly.
“The Congressional process for dealing with harassment and discrimination is broken,” said Cortez Masto. “No victim should be afraid to speak out and taxpayers should not have to carry the burden of harassment settlements. As we work to end the pervasive culture of harassment in the workplace, Congress must lead by example and pass Congressional Accountability and Harassment Reform Act now.”
Cortez Masto is a cosponsor of the Congressional Harassment Reform Act, the ME TOO Congress Act and an original cosponsor of the resolution mandating sexual harassment training in the Senate.
A copy of the bill can be found HERE.
If passed, this bill would make a number of changes to current law, including:
- Extend protections to interns, fellows, and employees of the Library of Congress.
- Allow victims to choose how to resolve their complaint by making counseling and mediation no longer mandatory and protecting their option to discuss their claim publicly.
- Prohibit members from using personal office funds to settle claims.