CHICAGO (CBS) — Three Cook County Board members are proposing more extensive sexual harassment training for county employees.
“There’s no place for sexual harassment in the Cook County government,” said County Commissioner Dennis Deer, who added that sexual harassment is an issue that should be front and center before county workers.
He says his proposal would require elected officials, staff and employees to receive training to help prevent harassment, which would include board commissioners.
“I’m not aware of much sexual harassment going on in the county, but so often government reacts to policy and doesn’t act before policies and people do the wrong thing,” said Commissioner Tim Schneider, who is co-sponsoring the measure. “People that work for the county deserve a safe work place, free of sexual harassment.”
Stephanie Love-Patterson, who’s with Connections for Abused Women and their Children, supports the proposal. She says it’s important for people to be given the tools to understand what sexual assault is, as well as how to address it.
“It’s important for men to know how to say, ‘you know, what you said to that other employee? That’s wrong.'” Love-Patterson noted.
Right now, according to commissioners, employees only receive sexual harassment training during their initial orientation.