Warren leads Senate Dem call for sexual harassment hearings

Warren leads Senate Dem call for sexual harassment hearings
© Greg Nash

Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenWarren set to announce plan for universal child care: reports Barack, Michelle Obama expected to refrain from endorsing in 2020 Dem primary: report Booker seeks dialogue about race as he kicks off 2020 campaign MORE (D-Mass.) is leading a call for hearings on sexual misconduct in the workplace in a letter signed by all Democrats on the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee. 

"As members of the committee, it is our duty to ensure that workers are protected from sexual assault and harassment in their jobs," the letter said. 

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"The deluge of workers who have come forward to report incidents of workplace sexual harassment and assault in recent months has rightly caused Congress to reexamine existing anti-harassment and anti-discrimination policies and has forced us to question the efficacy of existing worker protections."

The letter cites a report from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) — which enforces laws aimed at preventing discrimination and misconduct in the workplace — that found that 25 percent to 85 percent of women experience sexual harassment in the workplace. 

"Women are more likely to experience sexual harassment than men; meanwhile, low-income women and women of color often face unique barriers to sexual harassment reporting and prevention. But despite the pervasiveness of harassment, the committee has yet to hold a hearing on workplace sexual harassment," the senators write.

The move comes as women from Hollywood to Washington, D.C., have come forward to accuse high-power men of sexual misconduct. 

The avalanche of accusations have had a major impact on Capitol Hill. 

Former Sen. Al FrankenAlan (Al) Stuart FrankenVirginia can be better than this Harris off to best start among Dems in race, say strategists, donors Virginia scandals pit Democrats against themselves and their message MORE (D-Minn.) and Rep. John ConyersJohn James ConyersDemocrats seek cosponsors for new 'Medicare for all' bill Virginia scandals pit Democrats against themselves and their message Women's March plans 'Medicare for All' day of lobbying in DC MORE Jr. (D-Mich.) were forced to resign following accusations against them.