JONES WORKS TO END SECRET TAXPAYER-FUNDED HARASSMENT SETTLEMENTS

Nov 30, 2017 Issues: Values

WASHINGTON, DC  –  Today, Congressman Walter B. Jones (NC-3) joined Congressman Ron DeSantis (FL-6), along with Reps. Marsha Blackburn (TN-7), Tulsi Gabbard (HI-2), Jim Cooper (TN-5), and Kathleen Rice (NY-4), in introducing H.R. 4494, the Congressional Accountability and Hush Fund Elimination Act. The bill would prohibit the use of taxpayers’ money to pay sexual harassment or assault settlements involving members of Congress.

Specifically, the Congressional Accountability and Hush Fund Elimination Act would:
     • Prohibit the use of public funds to pay settlements or awards for sexual harassment or assault claims involving members of Congress
     • Disclose all payments previously made by the Office of Compliance on its website (the name of the victim is expressly prohibited from being disclosed)
     • Require perpetrators to reimburse the taxpayers with interest
     • Prohibit nondisclosure agreements as a precondition to initiate procedures to address sexual harassment or assault claims
     • Permit victims of sexual harassment or assault to make public statements about their claim, regardless of any previously signed nondisclosure agreement

“American taxpayers’ hard-earned money should not be used to pay sexual harassment settlements involving members of Congress,” said Congressman Jones.  “Those funds should come out of the members’ pocket, not the taxpayers’.”

Other original cosponsors include: Reps. Don Bacon, Jim Banks, Jack Bergman, Andy Biggs, Diane Black, Rod Blum, Dave Brat, Cheri Bustos, Kevin Cramer, John Delaney, Brian Fitzpatrick, Chuck Fleischmann, Rueben Gallego, Jody Hice, Eleanor Holmes Norton, Mike Johnson, Dave Loebsack, Tom Marino, Martha McSally, Luke Messer, Seth Moulton, Ralph Norman, Tom O’Halleran, Gary Palmer, Steve Pearce, Robert Pittenger, Chellie Pingree, Jared Polis, Francis Rooney, Thomas Rooney, Todd Rokita, Mark Sanford, Brad Schneider, Scott Tipton, Mimi Walters, Roger Williams, and Ted Yoho.

The full bill is attached.

For additional information, please contact Allison Tucker in Congressman Walter Jones’ office at Allison.tucker@mail.house.gov or (202) 225-3415.

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