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US Congress needs harassment training
The House of Representatives will adopt mandatory training on sexual harassment and discrimination, Speaker Paul Ryan said on Tuesday.
It comes after members of Congress shared stories of women being propositioned and groped in the halls of the US Capitol.
"Our goal is not only to raise awareness, but also make abundantly clear that harassment in any form has no place in this institution," the Republican speaker said in a statement.This length of fingers tells a lot about you
The Committee on House Administration held a hearing on sexual harassment policies against a backdrop of social outrage over sexual misconduct by powerful men that began with allegations by multiple women against Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein.
U.S. Representative Jackie Speier told the panel that two current House members, a Republican and a Democrat, had engaged in sexual harassment. She did not identify the lawmakers.
She said numerous staff members, both men and women, had been subjected to inexcusable and often illegal behaviour.‘The Butcher’: Man behind war crime
They included "propositions such as 'Are you going to be a good girl?' to perpetrators exposing their genitals, to victims having their private parts grabbed on the House floor," she said.
Speier later told MSNBC: "We do know that about $15 million has been paid out by the House on behalf of harassers in the last 10 to 15 years," including one taxpayer-funded settlement on behalf of one of the current House members.