2008-2012: Taxpayers paid over $300K in sexual harassment settlements

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Financial records from the Office of Compliance (OOC) have been released by the Committee on House Administration between Fiscal Year 2008 and Fiscal Year 2012, and records show taxpayers funded $342,225.85 in settlements for sexual harassment and discrimination charges leveled against House members.

The records were released Tuesday by OCC in accordance with recent outrage that taxpayers, not lawmakers, were paying for settlements, and that details about the charges were not made public.

The release is “part of the Committee on House Administration’s extensive review of sexual harassment and discrimination in the congressional workplace,” according to the OOC announcement. “The OOC provided the committee with additional statistics of settlements and awards paid by type of claims as a result of cases originating with an employing office in the House of Representatives from FY2008 – FY2012.”

The data was given to Rep. Gregg Harper (R-Miss.), chairman of the committee, who issued the following press release:

“As I have stated from the beginning of this review, one case of sexual harassment is one case too many. We must create a culture within our Capitol Hill community that instills in every employee and employer, new and old, that there is no place for sexual harassment in the halls of Congress.

As part of my Committee’s review, I asked the Office of Compliance for a breakdown of the $17 million total amount that has been reported by their office for all cases involving claims of violations of the Congressional Accountability Act. We released the original data provided to the Committee on December 1.

The OOC has provided our committee with additional information from FY2008 through FY2012 involving offices within the House of Representatives. The Committee has yet to receive all of the information we requested. We will continue to investigate the OOC’s record-keeping practices as part of our extensive review.”

OOC details from the release of records are seen below:

Claims against Member-led Offices from 2008-2012:

1. sex discrimination, retaliation, & FLSA violation                                                    $15,225.00

2. sex and disability discrimination & retaliation                                                        $8,160.00

3. retaliation                                                                                                                        $10,000.00

4. race and disability discrimination & retaliation                                                      $17,500.00

5. retaliation                                                                                                                        $15,333.33

6. sexual harassment and harassment because of retaliation                                  $85,000.00

7. sex discrimination (including sexual harassment) & retaliation                         $10,000.00

8. sexual harassment because of retaliation & sex discrimination                          $20,000.00

9. disability discrimination & retaliation                                                                      $50,000.00

10. sex discrimination, retaliation & FLSA violation                                                  $12,100.00

11. race discrimination                                                                                                      $5,000.00

12. age discrimination                                                                                                       $65,000.00

13. age discrimination                                                                                                       $5,000.00

14. race, age, national origin, sex, and disability discrimination & retaliation     $8,000.00

15. race and sex discrimination, retaliation & FMLA violation                                $15,907.52

Total of Settlement Amounts for Member-led offices:                              $342,225.85

                                                     . . .

Claims Against Non-Member-led Offices from 2008-2012:

1. race and age discrimination & retaliation                                                                $12,240.00

Total of Settlement Amounts for Non-Member-led Offices:                  $12,240.00

Total of Settlement Amounts for All House Offices (2008-2012):       $354,465.85

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