The New York State Senate approved legislation Monday co-sponsored by Senator Tom O’Mara to enact a comprehensive series of actions to combat sexual harassment in New York’s workplaces.
“We hope this legislation delivers the message loud and clear that there is no place for sexual harassment in the workplace. It won’t be tolerated, victims will have a voice, offenders will be held accountable, and our workplaces will be made safe,” said O’Mara.
The legislation would enact a series of major reforms, including:
– establishing a statutory definition of sexual harassment;
– prohibiting the anonymity of the accused in court-approved settlements and banning mandatory sexual harassment arbitration clauses;
– prohibiting confidentiality agreements unless the victim requests confidentiality;
– expanding protections to independent contractors;
– creating uniform policies for all branches of state and local government; and
– protecting taxpayers from paying for public-sector harassment settlements.
The legislation now goes to the state Assembly.