Like Countable?

Install the App
TRY NOW

senate Bill S. 3749

Reforming the Congressional Sexual Harassment Claims Process & Making Members Personally Repay Settlements

Argument in favor

This long overdue, bipartisan bill makes clear that Congress has no tolerance for workplace sexual harassment or discrimination while protecting victims. It also ensures that lawmakers can’t use taxpayer funds to repay settlements stemming from their misconduct.

Lesia's Opinion
···
12/13/2018
Well it’s about time they stopped using tax payer dollars to cover up their crimes against women.
Like (74)
Follow
Share
Tyson's Opinion
···
12/13/2018
I shouldn’t have to foot the bill for someone else’s crime.
Like (67)
Follow
Share
Alex's Opinion
···
12/13/2018
Accountability is a foreign word in Washington DC
Like (40)
Follow
Share

Argument opposed

The existing process Congress uses to settle sexual harassment and workplace discrimination claims and its mandatory cooling of and mediation periods should be maintained. Lawmakers shouldn’t be personally responsible for paying settlements against them.

Bryan's Opinion
···
12/13/2018
Because there had to be at least one moron who voted “Nay”.
Like (49)
Follow
Share
Doug's Opinion
···
12/13/2018
I don’t think anyone can defend themselves from a false claim of sexual harassment and can’t support this legislation until it contains a provision for the person claiming victim status to reimburse the accused if they are found to be innocent.
Like (12)
Follow
Share
John's Opinion
···
12/14/2018
Men, It's time to join the HE TOO and WHY NOT ME TOO ? movements to protect yourself against seductresses and liars like Blasé- Ford. False accusers should be jailed for life and made to pay reparations to the wrongly accused.
Like (2)
Follow
Share

bill Progress


  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The house has not voted
  • The senate has not voted
    IntroducedDecember 13th, 2018

What is Senate Bill S. 3749?

This bill would reform the process used to handle claims of sexual harassment or other workplace discrimination in Congress. It’d eliminate the mandatory counseling and mediation periods of the current process, require lawmakers to personally repay settlements stemming from their actions, and ensure employees are educated about their workplace rights.

Process Reforms

Several elements of the current sexual harassment and workplace discrimination claim process would be eliminated, including the mandatory 30-day “counseling” period, the mandatory 30-day mediation phase, and the 30-day “cooling off” period.

The new process would allow a victim to immediately pursue as the initial stage mediation, either with an administrative hearing through the Office of Compliance (OOC, renamed from the OCWR) or a civil action in federal district court. The employee would still have the option to engage in mediation, but wouldn’t be required to. Employees would also be able to consult with a confidential advisor (an attorney with relevant experience in workplace law) for assistance in navigating the claims process and their options.

Employee Protections

Employees would have immediate access to a dedicated advocate who will provide consultation and assistance throughout proceedings through the OOC. They would also be permitted to request remote work and paid leave without fear of retribution. Notification of employee rights would be required to be posted by all legislative branch employing offices. OOC would be required to establish an electronic system for taking in claims by victims, tracking those claims throughout the process, and generating reports on various details of claims.

Additional support for state, district, and regional legislative branch staff would be provided to ensure they have the same access to OOC resources, training opportunities, guidance, and advice as Washington D.C. based legislative branch workers. Protections would be extended to unpaid staff including interns, detailees, and fellows as well as staff working on legislative branch commissions.

Accountability

Members of the House and Senate would be held personally accountable for repaying awards and settlements stemming from acts of harassment they personally commit. Members who leave office would still be responsible for repayment, including through the garnishment of non-government wages and retirement annuities to ensure full repayment.

Public reports of OOC awards and settlements that include identification of whether a member of Congress has properly reimbursed the U.S. Treasury would be required. Awards and settlements would be automatically referred to the Ethics Committee when there is a claim against a member or senior staff. The Ethics Committee would have to review and approve settlements of harassment claims against a member within 90 days.

Additionally, an annual survey of staff each Congress would be required to examine the workplace culture on Capitol Hill.

Impact

Victims; the public; members of Congress; the OOC; and Congress.

Cost of Senate Bill S. 3749

A CBO cost estimate is unavailable.

More Information

In-Depth: Senate Rules Committee Chairman Roy Blunt (R-MO) offered the following statement in announcing this bipartisan deal on reforming congressional sexual harassment policies:

“This bipartisan, bicameral agreement sends a clear message that harassment in any form will not be tolerated by the Congress. The reforms in this agreement will, most importantly, strengthen protections for victims and hold Members of Congress personally accountable for their misconduct. I appreciate Senator Klobuchar’s partnership, and the efforts of leaders in the House and Senate, who have come together to get this done. I urge all of our colleagues to get this legislation to the president’s desk.”

Senate Rules Committee Ranking Member Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) added:

“For too long, victims of sexual harassment in Congress have been forced into a process that lacks transparency and accountability, and fails them at a time when they need the most support. Our bipartisan, bicameral legislation—which we expect to pass in the coming days—will overhaul this broken process, ensure victims can immediately seek justice, and hold Members of Congress accountable. I thank Senator Blunt and leaders in the House and Senate for all the work they have done with me to finalize this critical legislation.”

The House and Senate each passed their own versions of bills to reform the congressional sexual harassment claims process unanimously in the spring of 2018, and this bill represents the culmination of months of negotiations on a compromise.


Media:

Summary by Eric Revell

(Photo Credit: iStock.com / drnadig)

AKA

Congressional Accountability Act of 1995 Reform Act

Official Title

Congressional Accountability Act of 1995 Reform Act

    Can we start with Dfrump??
    Like (84)
    Follow
    Share
    Because there had to be at least one moron who voted “Nay”.
    Like (49)
    Follow
    Share
    Well it’s about time they stopped using tax payer dollars to cover up their crimes against women.
    Like (74)
    Follow
    Share
    I shouldn’t have to foot the bill for someone else’s crime.
    Like (67)
    Follow
    Share
    I want to know the names of those who used the fund.
    Like (44)
    Follow
    Share
    Accountability is a foreign word in Washington DC
    Like (40)
    Follow
    Share
    Awesome. Now how about all the tax dollars that have already been paid. Will they be refunded and placed back into our deficit?
    Like (39)
    Follow
    Share
    Why should I be responsible for someone else’s mistakes and bad conduct? If a government worker sexually harasses someone let them suffer the consequences and pay for it financially as well.
    Like (27)
    Follow
    Share
    They should be made known and forced to leave their positions!
    Like (19)
    Follow
    Share
    Yes, if the perp is made to repay out his pocket then he/she is more then likely not to do it again.
    Like (18)
    Follow
    Share
    It’s about time
    Like (16)
    Follow
    Share
    Yes. Why would congresspersons not work under similar rules as I do. If I’m found to have sexually harassed anyone at work (or not at work), I would be fired yesterday and my employer sure as hell would not pay my settlement and/or legal fees!
    Like (14)
    Follow
    Share
    PASS the Senate Bill S.3749 Bipartisan Sexual Harassment Legislation I’m in support and recommend passage of the Senate Bill S.3749 bipartisan legislation, which is a long overdue bill, which makes it clear that Congress has no tolerance for workplace sexual harassment or discrimination while protecting victims. It also ensures that lawmakers can’t use taxpayer funds to repay settlements stemming from their misconduct. SneakyPete. 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻. 12*13*18.....
    Like (13)
    Follow
    Share
    I don’t think anyone can defend themselves from a false claim of sexual harassment and can’t support this legislation until it contains a provision for the person claiming victim status to reimburse the accused if they are found to be innocent.
    Like (12)
    Follow
    Share
    This is great. Will convicted politicians be terminated immediately AND required to pay? We can’t allow politicians to escape justice.
    Like (8)
    Follow
    Share
    Yes, & I believe it should be Disclosed whom we have paid sexual harassment settlements for already.
    Like (7)
    Follow
    Share
    Plain and simple, it's the right thing to do. Will members with older, settled claims also be required to reimburse the US Treasury?
    Like (7)
    Follow
    Share
    We DEMAND all the names, dates and dollar amounts that HAVE been paid from your slush fund that is funded by our taxpayer dollars! We already know Shifty Schiff from California used $400,000 to settle with a 19 year old young man! Who else????????????????
    Like (7)
    Follow
    Share
    Yes all members of GOV. & in the private sector should have to pay their own settlements for sexual abuse & attacks. It's no one else's responsibility. Sexual abuser's must be held accountable & brought to justice. Stop just paying off women. Abusers should also go to jail.
    Like (7)
    Follow
    Share
    As a taxpayer I would like to be refunded the monies that have been paid out for these representatives bad behavior.
    Like (6)
    Follow
    Share
    MORE