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Senate Majority Leader

Bob Duff

Representing Norwalk & Darien

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Senate Democrats Call for Public Hearings to Review General Assembly’s Sexual Harassment Policies

The Senate Democratic Caucus today issued a call for public hearings by the Legislative Management Committee examining the General Assembly’s sexual harassment policies. Senate President Pro Tempore Martin M. Looney (D-New Haven) and Senate Majority Leader Bob Duff (D-Norwalk) will make a formal request of the other legislative leaders at next week’s budget meeting.

“As a society, we have seen sexual harassment exposed across all types of industries and all levels of government,” said Senator Looney. “The Connecticut General Assembly should be a place in which sexual harassment does not exist and a place where strong protections are in place for everyone who enters the capitol grounds. The members of the Senate Democratic Caucus and I believe that it is critically important to hold hearings in public so that we can examine best practices from across the country, hear from experts in the field and receive input from legislators, staff and the public.”

Recognizing that it is extremely difficult for individuals to come forward and report inappropriate behavior, especially in a public hearing, the Senate Democrats are seeking to establish a process in which testimony may be submitted anonymously to the committee.

“The Connecticut General Assembly can and should be a national leader when it comes to our sexual harassment policies; anything less is unacceptable,” said Senator Duff. “Public hearings will provide us with a significant opportunity to reexamine the General Assembly’s policies in an open and transparent manner. If we have a problem in the General Assembly, we should know about it; and if we have a problem we need to immediately address it.”

The Office of Legislative Management last updated the sexual harassment policies in July of 2014 after consulting with outside counsel and experts.

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