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Record #: R2018-304   
Type: Resolution Status: Failed to Pass
Intro date: 3/28/2018 Current Controlling Legislative Body: Committee on Workforce Development and Audit
Final action:
Title: Call for Illinois General Assembly to ban provisions in employment contracts waiving discrimination, retaliation or harassment claims
Sponsors: Laurino, Margaret, Harris, Michelle A., Austin, Carrie M., Smith, Michele, King, Sophia D., Santiago, Milagros, Foulkes, Toni, Mitts, Emma, Silverstein, Debra L., Valencia, Anna M., Mell, Deborah, Hairston, Leslie A., Dowell, Pat, Sadlowski Garza, Susan
Attachments: 1. R2018-304.pdf
Related files: R2019-362
Committee on Workforce Development and Audit RESOLUTION
WHEREAS, women across the nation have united through a social media campaign sharing their stories of sexual harassment and assault by using the hashtag #MeToo; and

WHEREAS, in the wake of the #MeToo cultural movement, powerful men are not the only perpetrators of sexual misconduct, and in fact, women have started the #WhatAboutUs hashtag to demonstrate that sexual harassment is rampant among blue-collar employment as well; and

WHEREAS, the #MeToo and #WhatAboutUs movements have spread into courts, workplaces, legislative bodies, universities, and factories bringing the topic and its severity to the forefront of American conversations; and

WHEREAS, one of the mechanisms perpetrators of sexual assault and sexual harassment utilize to silence their victims is nondisclosure or nondisparagement agreements ("NDAs"); and

WHEREAS, NDAs prevent the disclosure of facts that help establish a cause of action for civil damages for sexual offenses such as sexual assault, sexual harassment, or harassment or discrimination based on sex; and

WHEREAS, Zelda Perkins, who worked as Harvey Weinstein's assistant in Miramax's London office in the late 1990s, came forward in October of 2017 as a victim of sexual harassment and casted light on how egregious NDAs can be in silencing and shaming victims; and

WHEREAS, the agreement Ms. Perkins signed in 1998 along with a colleague called for a 250,000 pounds ($400,000 at the time) payout, therapy for Mr. Weinstein "for as long as his therapist deems necessary," as well as other measures aimed at protecting others from his behavior such as: (1) within six months of the agreement with Ms. Perkins, Miramax would appoint three "complaint handlers" who would investigate future harassment allegations; (2) provide proof that the staff were informed about the new procedures; and (3) if a complaint against Mr. Weinstein occurred within two years of the agreement and resulted in a settlement...

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