House discloses three more sexual harassment settlements totaling $115K

The Office of Compliance on Tuesday disclosed three additional sexual harassment settlements totaling $115,000 on the House side, as advocates and lawmakers call for changes to how Congress handles accusations of sexual misconduct.

The settlements are from fiscal 2008 through 2012. The information does not include to whom the settlements were paid or from which offices the complaints originated.

“As I have stated from the beginning of this review, one case of sexual harassment is one case too many,” Rep. Gregg Harper (R-Miss.), who chairs the House Administration Committee, said in a statement. “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.”

Harper said the committee’s investigations into logging settlements would continue, as it has yet to obtain all of the requested information.

The total dollar amount paid out for House member-led offices between those fiscal years is $342,225.85.

The data release comes as sexual harassment and misconduct policies on Capitol Hill have come under scrutiny after women came forward with various accusations against lawmakers of both parties in recent weeks.

On Monday, the Office of Compliance rejected a request from Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) to detail the upper chamber’s sexual harassment settlements, citing confidentiality rules.

“The [Office of Compliance] shares your concern over the issue of sexual harassment in Congressional workplaces, and we stand ready to work with Members, Committees, and other employing offices to promote awareness and prevention of this problem,” the office’s director said in a letter.

Three members of Congress, including Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.), have resigned or announced plans to resign in recent weeks over sexual misconduct allegations, while two others have said they will not run for reelection next year.

The House last month voted to pass legislation that would require both members and their staff participate in annual sexual harassment awareness training.

Tags Al Franken Congressional Accountability Act Gregg Harper Sexual harassment Tim Kaine United States Congress Office of Compliance
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