Lawmakers sexually harass custodial staff at Capitol: Watchdog – Washington Examiner

Custodial staff members who clean the offices of lawmakers claim they’ve experienced sexual harassment from members of Congress, according to a new report.

An inspector general report examining the Architect of the Capitol’s response to sexual harassment found “some custodial staff, especially those on the night shift, report exposure to harassment while working in the offices of Members of Congress.”

“Some staff have reported overhearing harassing conversations, being the target of harassment, and observing materials such as pornography, but do not speak up due to fear of losing their jobs,” the report says.

The report examined sexual harassment information from October 2008 to October 2018 and found that there have been 57 reported incidents of sexual harassment. Of those, approximately 44% were substantiated.

“Given the size of the AOC’s workforce, we note that the actual number of sexual harassment complaints is relatively low,” the report says. “There remains, however, the perception that sexual harassment is a pervasive problem within the AOC.”

According to one worker, the agency did little to address concerns related to harassment.

“Past issues of temper, volatility and threatened violence by members of Congress were weakly addressed by AOC executives and other members of Congress,” an AOC worker said, according to the report.

However, no lawmakers in particular were singled out in the report.

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