It is time we update our policies to reflect the environment that everyone who walks through these doors deserves.

AUGUSTA – This morning, the State and Local Government Committee is holding a public hearing on LD 1842, An Act to Require Education & Training Regarding Harassment for Legislators, Legislative Staff and Lobbyists. Speaker Sara Gideon provided written testimony to the committee and released the following statement in support:

“As legislators, we have no greater responsibility than protecting the health and safety of the people we represent. That responsibility also requires that we grant the same protections to the people who work in our State House.

Sexual assault and harassment are especially toxic crimes, and sadly, all too common – no matter the industry. Whether it be a public or private company, a nonprofit, a business with many employees or just a handful, unwelcome advances and inappropriate behavior is the reality.

For too long, this type of behavior was brushed aside and ignored. Or worse, it was covered up. At our place of work, our State House, we must set and abide by a higher standard. It is time we update our policies to reflect the environment that everyone who walks through these doors deserves.”

Full text of testimony can be found here.