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State Senator Taylor Comments on Sexual Harassment in Legislature

Posted: Thursday, January 18th, 2018 at 6:20 am
Author: KCII News - Sam McIntosh

State Senator Rich Taylor (D) says he believes there isn’t a sexual harassment problem in the state Senate overall, but with a few lawmakers named in a lawsuit.

Taylor’s comments come after a report was released this month commissioned by Senate Republican leaders. A $1.75 million settlement was reached last September in a sexual harassment lawsuit filed by a former Iowa Senate Republican staffer against the state of Iowa. Taylor says he treats everyone with the same respect that he would want, and that this is not a problem with the legislature overall but with the legislators that were named in the suit, including Senate Majority Leader Bill Dix (R). Former state Senate president and human resources professional Mary Kramer wrote the Senate should act to maintain a safe, respectful and professional workplace. Taylor reacts, “I personally was pretty disappointed with Ms. Kramer’s remarks that were basically blaming the entire Senate for the sexual harassment problems that are going on here, when it was not the entire Senate that was behind it. It was a few Republicans and a Republican Senate majority leader that were named in these lawsuits.”

Kramer’s report recommends that all persons active in the legislative branch must receive training regarding what constitutes inappropriate behavior and acknowledge in writing they have heard and understood the guidelines. She also recommends an establishment of a formal complaint filing process that guarantees an impartial investigation assuring confidentiality and no retaliation.