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Cuomo's Resignation Sparks New Look At Sexual Harassment Laws In Neighboring Connecticut

Sexual harassment
Image by mohamed Hassan from Pixabay

Connecticut officials said New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s resignation highlights the need to pay more attention to sexual harassment in the workplace.

State Senator Mae Flexer is a Democrat from Killingly. Two years ago, in the wake of the #MeToo Movement, she sponsored the TimesUp Act — Connecticut’s tougher new law against sexual harassment. Flexer said New York passed similar laws but Cuomo apparently failed to live up to them, so more needs to be done.

“The man who signed very similar laws in the state of New York continued to behave in this manner,” she said.

Flexer wants to introduce a bill next year that would invalidate non-disclosure agreements in sexual harassment cases.

Tanya Hughes is the executive director of the Connecticut Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities. She said Cuomo’s case is not unique.

“The situation in New York only serves to demonstrate that yet again this is a problem that permeates across society — across all jobs, across all titles, across all professions,” Hughes said.

Connecticut’s sexual harassment law requires employers with three or more employees to provide two hours of sexual harassment prevention training to their employees.

The training can be accessed for free on the state’s Commission for Human Rights and Opportunities website. The agency said sexual harassment complaints have increased in the past two years.

As WSHU Public Radio’s award-winning senior political reporter, Ebong Udoma draws on his extensive tenure to delve deep into state politics during a major election year.