Dec. 12, 2018

Lawmakers Agree to Strong New Protections to Ensure Greater Access to Justice for Congressional Workers

Statements From Public Citizen Experts

Note: Congressional lawmakers late today announced that they have reached an agreement on reforms to protect the congressional workforce from discrimination and harassment, and hold lawmakers personally liable for claims of harassment against them.

“Congress took strong action today because of constant public pressure for it to act. Lawmakers heard from survivors, from advocates, from spokespersons – and, simply put, the year of #MeToo could not be ignored. This bill will finally provide essential reforms for the legislative workforce, and we are thrilled to see it move to passage.”

- Lisa Gilbert, vice president of legislative affairs

“Passage of this legislation will show that Congress can act to address issues of national importance when We the People put pressure on it to act. Congress, and in in particular, the U.S. House of Representatives, should be commended for their strong bipartisan collaboration that should be a model for future congresses. However, Congress must do more starting next year to build on the success of this legislation, including requiring members to reimburse taxpayers for settlements for all claims of discrimination, not just claims of harassment and retaliation, and ensuring that all staffers are guaranteed free legal representation just as members of Congress receive. We look forward to working with Congress next year to make this a reality.”

- Remington A. Gregg, counsel for civil justice and consumer rights