House to require training vs. sexual harassment


Her testimony came on the same day CNN released a report in which more than 50 lawmakers, aides and Washington, D.C. veterans described a climate of "constant harassment - both subtle and explicit" on Capitol Hill.

There is now no requirement for sexual harassment training in the House of Representatives, but individual offices may voluntarily have their staffs attend trainings offered by the Office of Compliance.

Speier added that staff members on Capitol Hill deserve to "be able to work in a hostile free work environment".

Comstock - who worked on Capitol Hill as a staffer early in her career and served in the Virginia House of Delegates before being elected to represent Northern Virginia's 10th District a year ago - said Congress needs more training and stronger safeguards in place to ensure women don't have to give up their careers to escape sexually aggressive behavior.

During a House Administration hearing Tuesday on sexual harassment prevention, Rep. Barbara Comstock, R-Va., said she was recently told about a staffer who quit her job after a lawmaker asked her to bring work material to his house, then exposed himself. When the staffer arrived, he greeted her while wearing a towel, invited her in and exposed himself, Comstock said.

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On Tuesday, speaking before the Committee on House Administration, Speier said that since launching #MeTooCongress, current and former staffers have flooded her office with stories of unwanted sexual advances, touching, and, in one case, exposure.

"In fact, there are two members of Congress, Republican and Democrat, right now, who. have engaged in sexual harassment".

Comstock said the name of the lawmaker she mentioned wasn't disclosed to her, but emphasized that naming names is an important step in promoting accountability and encouraging victims to come forward. She's planning to introduce the ME TOO Congress Act to "overhaul the flawed complaint process, while providing better support for victims and whistleblowers".

House lawmakers on Tuesday will review the chamber's sexual harassment policies in the wake of sweeping allegations of sexual misconduct and harassment that have rocked powerful institutions and industries across the country. Last month, Rep. Speier publicly shared her story of being sexually harassed by the chief of staff in her office when she was a staffer.

The California representative did not name either of the lawmakers in question. One Republican has suggested that if elected, Moore should be expelled from the Senate.