Draft report suggests changes in legislature’s sexual harassment policy

An advisory committee reviewing the Legislature’s sexual harassment policy makes five recommendations in a draft report, according to The Tennessean, including having one person dedicated to deal with complaints.

Although the committee is still working on the document, other possible recommendations include maintaining annual statistics on the number of sexual harassment complaints the legislature receives, issuing a report if a violation of the policy has occurred and even outlining specific discipline that could be imposed on a member found violating the policy.

Such ideas were included in a six-page draft copy of the committee’s recommendation as presented by legislative attorney Doug Himes.

…Himes told the committee… that the recommendations are merely suggestions, and it is ultimately up to legislative leaders to decide which ones to adopt.

Among other measures legislative leaders could include in the new policy is requiring training for lawmakers and offering training for lobbyists and others visiting the legislature.

…(House Speaker Beth) Harwell created the panel on Jan. 24 in an attempt to determine ways to implement a new sexual harassment policy that will allow victims to comfortably come forward with any possible complaints.