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California lawmaker faces lawsuit amidst sexual harassment claims

Another lawmaker has been accused of inappropriate behavior by a former employee. The assemblyman is being sued by his former chief of staff for wrongful termination because, says the former chief, he reported that the assemblyman was harassing his staff. The sexual harassment claims continue to fly in California, and the accused lawmaker says that the man he fired was guilty of exactly the behaviors he reported. 

Late last year, the assemblyman faced allegations of sexual assault, although those claims could not be substantiated and were eventually dropped. Now, the man's former chief of staff has filed a lawsuit alleging a hostile work environment in which he was retaliated against for reporting inappropriate behavior to the supervising committee. The plaintiff alleges that the lawmaker created environments in which he was able to sexually harass staff; in turn, staff members complained to the chief of staff.

He also claims that after he reported the incidents to the committee, the atmosphere in the workplace changed, and he asserts that the committee members informed his boss about the report. He later had charges of harassment brought against him, which the man believes were fabricated to remove him from his job. There are individuals on both sides of the claim, and the truth of the matter is not yet clear. 

Sexual harassment has no place in the work environment. Allegations of this type of harassment should be taken seriously and investigated, because California law prohibits inappropriate workplace behavior. An individual experiencing harassment on the job may wish to consult with an attorney for more guidance on the available options to fight back.

Source: thedailybeast.com, "'She Wanted It': California Lawmaker Sexually Harassed, Assaulted Staffers, Lawsuit Claims", Olivia Messer, April 18, 2018

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